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Christmas cheer for Bury’s troubled families

Press Release   •   Dec 21, 2017 16:54 GMT

Kind-hearted individuals, organisations and businesses helped some of Bury’s troubled families to have a fantastic Christmas party.

A huge number of donations meant that around 80 families could enjoy the festive spirit at the Freedom Church in Bury.

Among the organisers was Kimberley Whittle, interim team leader of the SCIL (Supporting Communities, Improving Lives) and Accommodation Team.

She said: “The SCIL programme helps families in the borough who have multiple and often complex needs. We have 12 co-ordinators who work with around 120 families, who have experienced many challenges in their lives, and our job is to give them intense support to help them turn around their lives.

“Many of the families we work with can find Christmas a very difficult time and as a team we feel really passionate about bringing joy and happiness to them.

“We appealed for donations for our Christmas party, and they flooded in from council staff, residents and schools, along with the Masons, Women’s Institute, Porch Boxes, the Salvation Army and Zen Internet to name a few.

“The response we had was overwhelming and enabled us to throw the biggest and best party yet. The donations enabled us to make up Christmas hampers to raffle, and the person who won the £50 Tesco voucher said this would enable her to buy everything she needs for Christmas dinner.”

Some of the feedback from families at the party:

“Thank you, the kids loved it. Father Christmas was the best. I even sat on his knee and had a pic done xxx”

“…thanks for the invite and thank you for the presents as well, and I won a nice bag and purse which I really like as well thank you…”

“Thanks for letting us be a part of it - they loved it…”

“Thank you so much for inviting us to the party – the girls had the best time!”

Councillor Tamoor Tariq, cabinet member for communities and safer neighbourhoods, said: “The community responded magnificently to our appeal and helped to bring real Christmas cheer to some of Bury’s troubled families. It reminds you how generous and supportive Bury people are, making sure that no one is left behind at this celebratory time of year.”

ENDS

Press release issued: 21 December 2017.

Picture: Santa at the Christmas party at the Freedom Church, with Steve Clarke from Bury Masons and Kimberley Whittle of the SCIL team.