So many of us look forward to the long weekend that is the Easter break that it is easy to forget about the challenges it can bring for others.
On Easter Sunday nearly everything is closed; the usual social activities are taking a break, public transport is reduced, shops, cafes and libraries are closed and neighbours/local relatives often go away.
This can leave some of the elderly feeling isolated and alone.
Community Christmas is asking that people spare some time over the Easter break to think ahead to Christmas when a similar situation arises.
A shared cup of tea while watching an old film on TV may be all it takes to have a day filled with value that doesn’t involve unwanted presents and excessive food.
A larger group getting together for a meal in a hall, at someone’s home, or at the local pub is another way of enjoying companionship and sharing experiences.
The contact made on one day can help form the basis of a better community for the whole of the coming year.
At one event on Christmas Day 2013, two elderly gentlemen who hadn’t seen each other for 20 years were reunited and swapped phone numbers so that they can stay in contact in future.
It is estimated that between 250,000 and 500,000 elderly people are alone at Christmas.
Community Christmas exists to support and publicise new initiatives that work towards reducing this appalling statistic and would like to hear from individuals, organisations and communities about how they have come together in the past or how they want to change the future.
“If we use this chance to think ahead to Christmas we can create more cohesive communities that benefit of us all throughout the year.
“Thinking about it the week before Christmas will be too late;’ says Community Christmas founder, Caroline Billington, who can be contacted through the Community Christmas website or by calling 0844 854 9251.