CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

The best yuletide ever? How you can make sure nobody is forgotten this Christmas

Now is the time to think of fund-raising ideas for our annual hamper appeal

01 November, 2018

THE pumpkin lanterns of Halloween were up last night (Wednesday) as trick-or-treaters went door to door. At the weekend, the night sky will be awash with the colour of firework displays.

But as the nights draw in, something even bigger is suddenly looming on the calendar: Christmas.

It’s a time for celebration, right? Sadly, not everybody leaps to say yes when answering that question, and they include people living right here in our streets, our neighbourhoods. This is because for some, this special time of year is a period they dread.

We are thinking now of some of Camden’s elderly residents who live alone, feeling isolated. Christmas does not feel so merry when there is nobody dropping in to say “Hi”. Then there are the families just about getting by, and the statistics show that too many are living in poverty.

The tradition of present-giving can make parents on the breadline feel miserable, watching every single penny as their children look hopefully at the never-ending adverts for expensive toys and video-game gadgets. The sad truth is some of our neighbours just want Christmas done and dusted with already – what a way to feel.

That is why today (Thursday), we are launching our annual Christmas Hamper Appeal, which at its heart is a simple but touching reminder that nobody should miss out on the celebration. We know that a hamper will not bring back a loved one, and they do not magic up the latest games console for children living in a borough divided by wealth. But a box of treats is just our way of showing that we care. And you care.

For it’s your generosity which has made the appeal such a success over more than 30 years. With each donation from readers, we are able to distribute more hampers. We will be making our deliveries in the week before Christmas and this year we are resolved to making a record-breaking number of stops.

We are now asking readers to think about whether they can add to the collection, to show the power of community.

All donations, every penny, will help the appeal. We are also asking people to come up with ideas to raise money for the appeal: pub quizzes, football matches, tin-rattling carol singing, a sponsored run, swim or cycle (or all three) – everything. Schools, community groups, pubs and clubs have all helped in the past, and we’d love it if you could do the same again this year.

It means so much, and we’ll make sure all your efforts are reported in the paper.

Finally, if you know somebody who you think should get a visit from the New Journal hamper sleigh before Christmas, please let us know.

You can send a cheque to ‘Camden Journal Hamper Fund’, Camden New Journal, 40 Camden Road, London, NW1 9DR, or donate by clicking on the button below:

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