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Pals Liz and Gail form close bond thanks to charity that helps banish loneliness

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When New Zealand resident Kevin Everett reached out to a Lanarkshire charity to explain how his elderly mum in his native Scotland would benefit from some company, it was a call that would ignite the kindling of a heart-warming friendship between two like-minded women.Dublin-born pensioner Elizabeth McCann has been living alone in South Lanarkshire since the passing of her husband, Peter Everett, three years ago.With her sons, Nigel and Kevin, settled on the other side of the world with her six grandchildren, Liz missed her family terribly and craved companionship.The Lanarkshire Live app is available to download now.

Get all the news from your area – as well as features, entertainment, sport and the latest on Lanarkshire’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic – straight to your fingertips, 24/7.The free download features the latest breaking news and exclusive stories, and allows you to customise your page to the sections that matter most to you.Head to the App Store and never miss a beat in Lanarkshire - iOS - Android Then, there was Gail McCallum – an East Kilbride gran-of-five, who’d been made redundant after 16 years as general manager of a Lanarkshire taxi firm.Each, for their own reasons, was seeking to meet someone new.

And award-winning Cambuslang-based charity LEAP was the catalyst that brought Liz and Gail together.Gail, 66, explained: “After I was made redundant three years ago, I went on to be a carer with a local private care company.

I enjoyed the work, but the hours were very long.”She resigned from her caring post after 15 months to work for a short period in the Blantyre office of charity, DEBRA.

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