Christmas can be a strange time of year. It is a time of stark contrasts. There are those who spend so excessively on gifts living alongside those who struggle to get food on the table. Some lucky folk have clocked off work through to the New Year, whilst others will be working long shifts to keep vital services open. Some of you will be surrounded by huge families, yet others will be painfully alone.
For the families that we support at Trevi and Sunflower, there are mixed emotions at this time of year. It is a time when the absence of other children is felt more keenly. Separation from children is a pain that never goes away, but certain times of year are particularly tough.
Women will recall previous Christmas Days, spent in the darkness of addiction, sleeping on the streets, trapped in violent relationships or alone.
However, it is also a time of hope - the start of a better life and a time when children can enjoy being with their mum.
It is a time for gratitude. Gratitude for being somewhere safe, surrounded by people that care. This year, it has also been a time for enormous gratitude for those who have donated gifts, time or money to help us this Christmas.
We work hard at Trevi and Sunflower to make Christmas a positive time for the women and children. As we have been doing our usual Christmas preparations - Carol singing, a festive buffet, a trip to Pennywell Farm, we have been truly touched by the generosity of our local community.
The people of Plymouth have been so consistently supportive, it is a beautiful thing. We have all taken much comfort from those of you out there who have found time and energy to give to those less fortunate.
So I wanted to let you know how thankful we are. For the women we support, it can be overwhelming at times to know that complete strangers have gone out of their way to offer help and support. Many of our women have never been shown such kindness, such love without conditions. Thanks to the people of Plymouth, we have been able to help lots of mothers provide gifts for all of their children. Thanks to the people of Plymouth, there will be women and children waking up on Christmas Day knowing that there are people behind them, willing them on to have a happier, better life.
So as we all count down to Christmas Day, I want to say a huge, heartfelt thank to some of the many people who have got behind us this Christmas. Apologies in advance to anyone who I haven't mentioned - it's been a whirlwind week!!
Happy Christmas from all of us!!
- Part Time Working Mummy
- All the individual donors from across the world who have donated to our #TreviChristmas campaign so far
- Montpelier Primary School
- Plymouth Rock Choir
- Baby Dam
- St Matthius
- Mutley Baptist Church
- Boston Tea Party
- Plymouth Ladies Charity
- ODILS (Open Doors International Language School)
- Open Hearts Open Borders
- Steve Whiteway
- Miska Newton
- All of you who dropped in clothes, chocolates and toys - THANK YOU!!
Please watch and share our Trevi Christmas Appeal