Chi Kavindele, Director

It is with great sadness that we heard of the passing of Kevin Jenkins OBE. As well as being one of the founders of Community Links in 1977, Kevin was a Councillor for 28 years (1986 to 2010) and founded local charity Ambition Aspire Achieve (AAA) in 2016. Community Links Director said

Kevin Jenkins will be remembered for his immeasurable contribution to the lives of the people of Newham. He was one of Community Links’ founders and we were all privileged to have witnessed, and personally experienced, his unyielding devotion to others and his deep-rooted kindness. We will be forever grateful and proud of our work together. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Kevin and his family.

David Robinson, Co-Founder Community Links

It is with the deepest sadness that we announce the death of our dear friend and colleague Kevin Jenkins. Kevin died at home with his family on April 7th, 2021.

Kevin was the Co Founder of Community Links and served our organisation for more than 40 years as Director of Children and Youth and then as Honorary Life President.

Kevin began volunteering on the Community Bus whilst still at school in 1977. At the time, Community Links was beginning to develop out of this voluntary project and Kevin devoted himself to the new venture with the passion and determination that was to characterise his entire career.  He quickly established the children and youth programme with adventure playgrounds, holiday playschemes, after school clubs, youth groups and the alternative education work which would eventually grow into Education Links.

Kevin’s commitment and capacity for hard work was legendary. At its peak, the programme was engaging with thousands of young people every year.  The volume of organising, fundraising, managing, and leading was enormous but somehow Kevin always found the time and energy to care, very individually and very deeply, for all those with whom he worked.  His personal kindness was bottomless, unconditional and, for many many people, life-changing.

Over recent days old friends have shared with me some of their memories of Kevin going back  20, 30, even 40 years. Entire lifetimes for some.   Kevin wasn’t the kind of person that you once knew and then moved on. No matter the passing disagreements, once a friend, he was always a friend.

Kevin’s legacy is all around us at Community Links, and in the hearts and lives of more than we will ever know.  He was taken from us far too early but in 62 short years, he lived the lives of ten men, all of them extraordinary.