Meet the Panda Postie spreading cheer through her Norfolk town
PUBLISHED: 11:15 31 July 2020
A Norfolk postie has been ‘blown away’ by the generous support of her community after doing her rounds dressed as a panda to raise money for charity.
Sammy Stimpson, a postal worker delivering in the Downham Market area, decided to suit up in the inflatable costume in May to spread joy during lockdown and raise money for the Mental Health Foundation.
She said the idea was started because of the coronavirus outbreak and wanted to make people smile during these “strange times.”
Miss Stimpson said: “It was a very uncertain time for myself and many others who have never had to go through a pandemic, which made me feel the best way to get through the initial uncertainty was to stay positive.
“If I made just one person smile or giggle that’s what I was doing it for, as you really don’t know what people are going through behind closed doors.”
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The postie said fundraising for the charity was important to her as she had struggled with anxiety herself and felt mental health would be a key issue during the current crisis.
She set out to raise £200 but was “blown away” by support and has since raised £1,153.
Miss Stimpson said: “The reaction I got from the public was overwhelming, they made me feel almost like a little local celebrity the way people would take pictures and laugh and chat with me.
“I got such great reactions from everyone I came across on my deliveries. I can’t say so much for the local cats.
“I’m really quite chuffed with myself, and I’m so pleased for the charity I chose to do it for, as they truly deserve it.”
She said her most heartwarming moment was when an elderly man had been uplifted by her outfit after a family member passed away.
She added: “He said that he thought it was just going to be a horrible day for him where he wouldn’t even be able to crack a smile but he said spotting me waddling down the road just made him laugh so much that it helped give him the strength to face the day.”
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