Christmas is a time closely associated with family and loved ones but this is not the reality for many people across Hull.
Now Hull 2020 Champion, Debbi Lee, has gained the support of many volunteers, businesses and generous benefactors are offering some festive spirit to those who would feel the benefit of a good meal and good company by hosting a Community Christmas Lunch on Monday 22nd December.
Local businesses, charities and individuals from across Hull have been donating materials to make the event possible. Pledges have included a personal donation of meat to cater for 40 people, bags of potatoes, desserts, crackers, drinks, volunteers to help peel vegetables and even someone willing to play the part of Santa to dish out presents that have been donated.
The Community Christmas Lunch will take place at the Edinburgh Street community centre, on Woodcock Street, Hessle Road with the support of the Hull 2020 Champions, an NHS Hull Clinical Commissioning Group sponsored community project.
Event organiser Debbi said: “It’s easy for people who have a family to forget about those who might spend the festive season alone. We’re trying not to label people, though are holding this lunch for anyone that doesn’t have a good family Christmas to look forward to.
“We held a Big Lunch previously and it really demonstrated how important these sort of events and is part of a bigger idea we want to introduce next year.
“I recently bought a copy of the Big Issue from a street vendor and he was really made-up when I invited him to the event so I am seeing first hand the difference we can make.
“No one will be turned away so regardless of people’s circumstances they can come and enjoy a good community spirited Christmas lunch.”
Emma Latimer, Hull CCG Chief officer and Hull 2020 programme sponsor said:
“The Hull 2020 Champions programme is all about supporting people like Debbi, who want to make a positive, long-lasting change within their own communities.
“We have been overwhelmed by the kind generosity of businesses, charities and local people in supporting the Community Christmas Lunch. We hope it’s an opportunity for people to have a great time, make new friends and create strong bonds in the community.
“I’m also looking forward to going along with a few other CCG staff to meet everyone and help behind the scenes.”
Groups and individuals are welcome to attend though are asked to book a place by calling (01482) 601888, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by popping into the Edinburgh Street Community Centre to sign-up.