It’s been a busy and exciting few weeks at Kibble as the young people and staff team have been getting ready for Christmas.
The schools, care houses, Safe Centre, community houses and social enterprises have been buzzing with the spirit of Christmas. Pupils have taken to the stage to entertain audiences in their X-Mas Festival, there’s been Christmas Fayres, parties and nativity performances, not to mention an endless amount of fundraising for others that need a helping hand. As CEO at Kibble, I’ve been overwhelmed with pride for the young people, who despite their own difficulties have recognised the plight of others and given their all to make Christmas time a little easier for some.
On a freezing cold November night with the rain lashing, a group of boys and staff slept out to raise vital funds for the homeless charity Social Bite. Despite the awful weather conditions through the night, the young people embraced it and enjoyed spending time together and supporting such a great cause. So far, they have raised over £400 and with money still coming in, they’re hoping to smash their £500 target! The experience gave the boys a deeper understanding and compassion for those without a home and warm bed. The kindness that they have shown is incredible and we are all very proud of what they have done to help others.
In one of the other care houses, the young people have been avidly seeking donations of male and female bags filled with warm clothing, sanitary products, food items and gifts for the homeless. The young people and care staff will be heading out over the festive period to hand these out to those living on the streets to bring some joy in a difficult situation. The young people will be supporting the Glasgow City Mission who provide Christmas dinner, warmth, a kind ear and helping hand to those living on the streets at Christmas.
But the charity-giving and selflessness hasn’t stopped there, young people and staff across Kibble have been gathering up items of non-perishable food items, toiletries and gifts to make up Christmas Hampers. The hampers will be delivered to nearby food banks on Christmas Eve to help local people living in crisis and unable to afford food and other basic needs. At the Hillington Park Church foodbank, run by the Trussell Trust, 183 people sought food parcels on the Friday before Christmas alone.
Alongside this, pupils in education raised an incredible £160 for charity Save the Children. They raised funds through their X-Mas festival performance in front of a packed audience, as well as Christmas Jumper day on 14th December. The Safe Centre Christmas Fayre also helped raise vital funds for ME Action Scotland.
As you can see it’s certainly been a season of kindness and giving and I’m overwhelmed by the generosity of the young people and staff who have gone above and beyond to help others. As I sit here about to head home to my family and keep my son amused for a few hours longer as he excitedly awaits Santa’s arrival, I’m reminded by how much love and warmth exists in our Kibble family. This is what Christmas is all about; not turkey, Santa, mince pies and mistletoe. It’s about gathering together to show kindness and love.
On behalf of myself and all of us at Kibble, I wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas and all the best for 2019.