Adrian Friend

‘Force of nature’ keeping vulnerable connected

Adrian Friend has been described as a force of nature who is making life easier for people in his local community through his generosity and kindness.  Reporter Francesca Day contacted Tracy Carr, founder of Talk It Out, who has nominated Adrian for the 2024 Kent Mental Wellbeing Awards to find out more.


Adrian has been volunteering with Deal-based Talk It Out, which offers social support to people with moderate mental health problems and their carers, since the charity started 13 years ago.

Talk It Out founder, Tracy Carr, decided to nominate Adrian for his dedication and hard work and described him as “a force of nature with all he does for so many”.

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic Adrian began to deliver food hampers and care packages to vulnerable members of the local community.  As well as delivering vital supplies it was also a way for Talk It Out to check on their members and others in need.  This amazing service did not however end with the lifting of restrictions.

Adrian has continued to deliver food and care packages to vulnerable and self-isolating people in Deal, Dover and surrounding areas.  Tracy explained that they have been fortunate to receive grants to fund these care packages but in between grants Adrian has kindly funded the hampers himself.

Alongside staples such as bread, milk, tea, coffee and pasta Tracy reported that Adrian (who is her uncle) was also delivering eggs and other fresh produce to those that are struggling.  The food hampers and care packages also include toiletries, nappies and baby milk if the family receiving the package has a baby.

Tracy said: “This is because we have found that people are struggling as much or more because of the cost of living crisis.”

For the last three years Adrian has organised a Santa’s Grotto for local families that are struggling.  At last year’s event Adrian ensured that all of the parents also received a box of chocolates as well as a gift for the children.

In addition to all of the amazing work and support that Adrian offers to the members of Talk It Out Adrian serves as a local Councillor on Deal Town Council and is an active member of his local church.

He does all of this while managing his own health challenges which includes arthritis and according to Tracy “life is so much easier for so many people because of Adrian’s generosity and kindness”.

Nominations for the Kent Mental Wellbeing Awards can be linked to a simple act of kindness that lifted the spirits, a business that has improved staff wellbeing, through to a targeted initiative delivered by a charity, community group or statutory organisation to support a mental wellbeing issue.

The event is sponsored by Kent County Council, Kent Community Foundation, ADM Computing, GrainLNG – National Grid, Medway Council, Optyma Security, Wave Community Bank, Cactus Graphics and CommunityAid.

Submit nominations at For awards news follow @KentMWAwards on Facebook and X, the platform formerly known as Twitter.