Five of our groups in South London were invited along to Sidcup Fire Station on Sunday for their annual Christmas party as part of a community initiative organised by Watch Manager Neil Fox and his team.
Contact the Elderly have been working in close partnership with the London Fire Brigade for the past seven years, with teams across the whole of the city hosting events in their communities and referring socially isolated older people to our service.
Guests were treated to a Christmas dinner cooked by the firefighters in between calls, and Contact the Elderly volunteers organised a raffle with all proceeds going to a firefighter charity. Contact the Elderly volunteer Kim said: "The food came out with military precision and looked and tasted wonderful, and there was plenty to go round. One of my ladies was very appreciative of her roast turkey and said that she was really enjoying it as it was the first cooked meal she had had all week as she finds that she cannot cook meals for herself any more."
On departure the firefighters presented each of the guests with a goody bag containing a large box of shortbread biscuits, a small bottle of sherry, a chocolate Christmas pudding and a beautiful golden commemorative WW1 medal featuring a soldier and poppies.
Group Coordinator Pam said, "Christmas at Sidcup Fire Station is so looked forward to and enjoyed by all Contact the Elderly guests. Some of the firefighters had to leave on a shout, but those remaining worked very hard preparing and serving a wonderful Christmas dinner for over 35 guests. It was a wonderful afternoon, one made to remember, with all guests leaving with lovely gifts and smiles on their faces. Thank you Neil Fox for starting the events and the firefighters for carrying them out, you have make a lot of people very happy."
Contact the Elderly are looking for hosts and drivers in and around the Sidcup area to help us develop new groups. Please contact Alison Minney for more information.