Jacksons Lane calls for volunteers to put on Christmas for the old and isolated
- Credit: Courtesy of Jacksons Lane
A Highgate arts centre is appealing for drivers, bakers, crafters – and cash – to make Christmas happen for 300 vulnerable older people.
For more than 45 years, Jacksons Lane has opened its doors on Christmas day to isolated adults who would otherwise be on their own.
Last year, it switched to a delivery service with nearly 250 people enjoying a hamper, virtual entertainment and a doorstep chat with volunteers.
This year it will once again host a sit-down lunch for 100 people in the refurbished Archway Road building, while delivering hampers of food, gifts and games to around 200 who can't attend.
Volunteers are needed to fill and deliver the hampers, and help transporting people to and from Jacksons Lane on Christmas Day.
The centre is also seeking donations of gifts (£5-£10) to be dropped off unwrapped at the front desk, and financial help as part of the Big Give.
Community project manager Jen Oliver said: “Christmas Day with Jacksons Lane is an extraordinary community effort where everyone joins forces to ensure no older adult in Haringey is alone on such a special day. This year, we’re set to reach our largest number of isolated adults ever. It's a privilege to lead such a magnificent team of volunteers."
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Some guests return year after year, and look forward to the food, festive cheer and good company.
Jacksons Lane reopened in September after a year-long, £4.3 million redevelopment which included an improved foyer and disabled access.
Executive director and joint CEO Monique Deletant said: "The works have focussed on accessibility so we are able to fully cater for our guests who have mobility issues. We are delighted that we can open up the building to welcome even more guests than before and be part of their Christmas celebrations for another year."
From noon on November 30 to noon on December 7, any donations given through the Big Give portal will be matched up to £9,050 – doubling donations to support more people at what can be the loneliest time of year.
Donate by searching "Jacksons Lane" at donate.thebiggive.org.uk/christmas-challenge-2021 or volunteer by emailing email@example.com