Volunteers arrange Christmas Day activities for the lonely
News | Rhys Williams | Published: 12:42, Thursday December 12th, 2019.
Members of a voluntary group have arranged a community event for people who face spending Christmas Day alone.
The event, organised by volunteers at the Hengoed Happiness and Wellbeing Group, will take place at Hengoed Community Centre on December 25.
Christmas dinner, entertainment and other activities will be provided on the day, with space for up to 50 people to attend.
Places at the event, which starts at 11am, can be booked for £5.
Volunteers at the group have said they will try and provide transport to and from the event for those who may need it.
The group was set up in February this year and aims to promote mental wellbeing.
Group member Claire Bellavia, who has helped set up the Company4Christmas project, said: “Hengoed Company4Christmas is a project we have undertaken as a group initiative as we realised there are people who will spend Christmas Day completely alone.
“These people may be members of our group but don’t need to be – they’re equally welcome.
“We’re simply reaching out and offering them companionship, friendship and hopefully a lovely Christmas meal with others so they’re not alone.”
In a statement, the group said: “A huge thank you is due to Hengoed Community Centre committee for allowing us to use the venue and to Cllr Judith Pritchard for personally giving her time to open and close the doors to make it possible.”
Group member Sarah Parry said: “The group has really taken off this year and members are benefiting from the positive community and varied social events.
“We meet monthly in Penallta RFC on the first Thursday of the month at 6.30pm to share a meal, listen to a guest speaker and then socialise afterwards– it’s a great opportunity for people to share, socialise and learn different strategies to make life more enjoyable.”
The group is appealing for help on Christmas Day, and are welcoming food donations, particularly cooked sliced turkey, mince pies and wine.
To make a donation or to volunteer to help on the day, email HengoedCompany4Christmas@gmail.com or call 07881 268150.