On Sunday, 19th December, we were so glad to be able to hold our first community event for nearly 2 years. Since we were to sing carols outdoors and asked all participants to stay within their own household group, to stand at least one metre from the nearest group, wear a mask when not singing and to take a lateral flow test just before meeting up, we took every precaution to mitigate the risk of spreading covid. We were then rather concerned that no one would turn up to sing and/or collect and that, having become a cash-free society, our efforts might well yield very little for our chosen charity of unicef’s appeal for families in Afghanistan.
However, in ideal weather conditions (not wet, not windy and not particularly cold), a group of 39 enthusiastic singers, ranging in age from a few weeks to 8 decades and including about 10 children loyally trod every street from start to end while the 4 collectors knocked on every one of the 400+ doors in the Colonies and Bridge Place. Ian Mclean kindly led the singing with children frequently choosing their favourite festive songs and a few adults with beautiful voices singing in harmony.
Aware of the need for alternatives to cash donations, the Grapevine had already asked residents to amass cash or prepare a cheque (payable to UNICEF UK) to be ready for the collecting can. Imagine the surprise when the total raised was confirmed by the bank to be £927.91, thereby beating all previous collections by well over £100! In addition, several residents donated directly online and if you’d like to give to this very worthwhile cause, please click through below.
Thank you to everyone who made this community fund-raising event such a heart-warming success.