Thanks to our wonderful and generous supporters and volunteers, our young residents, local families and people with nowhere else to go were able to have a Merry Christmas at the Cardinal Hume Centre.
There was something for everyone over the Christmas period, with plenty of food, games, chatter and music. Thank you to all the committed volunteers who came to help with the parties who organised everything from catering to games. Their enthusiasm was amazing and hopefully they enjoyed themselves too!
There was even a present for everyone thanks to so many people’s overwhelming generosity, for some people this was the only gift they received this Christmas. Local companies showed their Christmas spirit with the Home Office, Land Securities, C&C Alpha Group, The Department for International Development & Warner Bros donating presents and Victoria Bid surpassing last years present drop by organising the donation of over 200 gifts, from local companies to give to disadvantaged children.
Schools and churches also showed tremendous support. At St Dominic’s Sixth Form College in Harrow-on-the-Hill, the teachers decided that rather than buying a Secret Santa gift for each other, they would each give a gift to one of our clients. What a brilliant idea! Sixth formers at Nicholas Breakspear School in St Albans were incredibly generous: they donated a car load of beautifully wrapped gifts. An avalanche of toiletries and groceries arrived in the Centre from Woldingham School, St Paul’s Primary School in Thames Ditton, Notre Dame in Cobham, St Thomas More in Wood Green and St Francis Xavier in Clapham. All the food and toiletries were shared between the young clients who live in our hostel and also the families and people who come to use our day services. In addition there were endless numbers of gifts, food, toiletry supplies and a huge 10kg turkey donated from churches and individual people.
Staff from Calvin Klein, Land Securities and the Department of Transport as well as boys from Dulwich Prep donated their time and present wrapping skills to ensure that each person had a present wrapped and tagged to open on Christmas Day.
It is wonderful to be able to invite people to celebrate with us at Christmas and to give each person a present. It allows them to feel special and valued at a time that can be very difficult. This would not have been possible without such generosity, so a huge thank you to those who volunteered or donated gifts.