Durham University students spread Christmas cheer to care home residents

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Hundreds of students and staff at Durham University have joined an initiative to spread festive cheer, writing Christmas cards to elderly residents in care homes. 

The cards are written to help those who may be feeling isolated or lonely during the Christmas period. 

Students are encouraged to share something about themselves in the card, as well as including a photograph. The cards are then delivered in an unsealed envelope following a quarantine period, in keeping with Covid-19 guidelines.

Care home staff can read the cards before they are delivered to their recipients and, if they choose, can match a resident to a student if there are clear common interests between them. 

The University hopes that this Christmas initiative will help to nurture long term links between care homes and Durham’s colleges. 

Weiwei Su, a Geography student, said: “I got involved because I thought it would be a brilliant way to connect students and communities, particularly during the current crisis.”

This project follows the initiative of the Durham University Student Volunteering and Outreach Team, who, in April, set up a pen pal scheme between students and residents to remind them they are not forgotten during the lockdown. 

Image: Michael Atkinson via Flickr

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