WORDS can’t begin to do justice to the legacy of tireless charity campaigner Sally-Anne Greenfield when she steps aside as chief executive of Leeds Community Foundation.
A true heroine of Leeds – and Yorkshire – she set up the organisation from scratch 13 years ago and has had the privilege of distributing more than £33m in grants to worthy causes.
Though she will be the first to pay tribute to others, and the benevolence of donors like the late tycoon Jimi Heselden, it is Sally-Anne who has ensured that the money has been spent wisely and that smaller groups did not miss out, like the Luncheon Club for the elderly that was saved by a £350 grant so it could buy a sink to enable volunteers to wash up plates and cutlery.
She knew how to make a difference – she stressed that her mission wasn’t just about “big and shiny new buildings” – and Leeds will always be in the debt of inspirational individual for whom no honour, or tribute, will be too great.
She said: “Quite small amounts of money, given to the right people, can actually have a massive impact.”
It is little surprise that Sally-Anne now plans to write no fewer than two books.
Achievable, surely, for the woman who has taken the organisation from “nothing” to a force that has made a real difference.