Members of Swindon Borough Council’s Community Health and Wellbeing team have been spreading festive cheer to people who face being alone this Christmas.
More than 250 presents were donated to the Council as part of an appeal to support isolated residents and Council staff and local volunteers have been busy delivering them this week in the run-up to Christmas Day.
Council employees and teams from Nationwide and the Great Western Hospital donated the gifts, which have gone to isolated people who benefit from the Council’s Swindon Circles initiative, plus other people known to the Council’s Homeline and Social Services teams.
Swindon Circles matches local volunteers with lonely and isolated people and where possible, encourages them to access activity and social networks in their local community.
Last week, 30 or so people who benefit from Swindon Circles, attended Savernake Street Social Hall for a special Christmas party.
Councillor Brian Ford, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Adults, said: “This time of year always brings out the best in people and I have been bowled over by people’s generosity at what can be a particularly lonely time for some people in our community.
“We received so many presents we have had to deliver them in batches because we couldn’t fit them all in our van. I would like to wish everyone that donated a present a very happy Christmas, your kindness will be very much appreciated by those that receive them.”
The Council is always looking for new Swindon Circles volunteers and offers support and training to anyone who would like to register as a volunteer befriender. There is no minimum commitment and every effort is made to match individuals with similar interests. Volunteers need to be 16 or over.
To find out more call the Live Well Hub on 01793 465513.