Christmas Projects – 2021

We run two main Christmas projects from the middle of December until the day after Boxing Day. The first is our Food Hamper Project which entails us receiving nominations for the most vulnerable families or individuals in the Hastings and Rother Area from local caring organisations such as Social Services, Health Visitors, Help the Aged etc. Volunteers help us to make up and deliver this much needed support the week before Christmas. This year we hope to pack the hampers on the week of 13th December 2021 and then distribute or be available for collection from 15th until completion (usually up to 23rd December). Please see the Volunteer page for more information about how to get involved this year.

The second project is our 2-day event on Christmas Day and Boxing Day. We welcome guests who would like a hot Christmas meal, company, entertainment, a shower, haircut or other support from 10am till 4pm both days. Volunteers help to make these positive, memorable days. There is no formal invite system for guests, just turn up on the day. Please spread the word for those in need to come along to the Salvation Army Hall, St Andrews Square, Hastings. As things stand at present, with regards to the pandemic, it looks like this will be able to go ahead (maybe with some slight adjustments for health and safety). This is great news for everyone and we hope to make it a Christmas to remember!

Christmas 2021
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Surviving Christmas

Surviving Christmas is run by a group of volunteer Trustees and supported by lead and regular volunteers who all live local to the area. Each person brings a different skill to the charity but we all have one thing in common, we are passionate about the work of Surviving Christmas in relieving hardship and distress to those most in need or vulnerable at this time of year.

WHAT WE DO (when COVID 19 restrictions allow)
Throughout the year we organise fundraising events so that we can financially support our projects over the Christmas period. We welcome volunteer support for these and will advertise our events on Facebook and via the website.

We look forward to working with volunteers from previous years as well as new recruits. In previous years we have asked volunteers to sign up for a job role and date through a Volunteer tab on this website. Each of the Project days start at 9.30am and finish by 4.30pm – the afternoon shifts start at 1pm. PLEASE KEEP AN EYE ON THE WEBSITE AS THE DECISION ABOUT HOW WE MANAGE VOLUNTEER RECRUITMENT WILL NEED TO BE MADE NEARER THE TIME. We look forward to working with you at the Salvation Army Hall, St Andrews Square, Hastings.

Hamper Project

About two weeks prior to Christmas, our volunteers pack over 700 food hampers and with the assistance of local caring organisations, deliver these, together with chocolates and gifts for children, to the homes of families or individuals who have been referred by a local agency. Some recipients prefer to collect their hamper from the Hall so we have volunteers available on the days leading up to Christmas to help hand these out.

The Two Day Open Event

People are welcome to join us for Christmas and Boxing Day for food and entertainment. Everyone is welcome to the event and as well as meals, we have services such as shower facilities, hairdressing and a clothing bank. There is no invite system for these events, it is simply turn up on the day if in need of some company, food, shelter or support. It takes place at the Salvation Army Hall, St Andrews Square in Hastings.

Our Objectives

The objectives of Surviving Christmas are to relieve in cases of need, hardship or distress persons who are resident, whether temporarily or not, in the County Borough of Hastings or the Rother District in the County of East Sussex during the Festive Season.

“I just had 2 ladies knock on the door with books and toys for * and chocolates and a big heavy box and I just opened it and it’s full of food 😭 did you do that? They said I was nominated by somebody but they knew the kid’s ages and stuff and they said to have a lovely Christmas. I nearly cried it’s so nice. My son is just going to be so happy when he wakes from his nap his favourite book is in there too.”

Hamper Recipient - 2019, Hastings

“It is an incredible service and personally I do not know how we would be able to support families at Christmas without it.”

Referral Agency - 2019, Hastings and Rother

“One family with three children, Mum told me that it had made a massive difference to her mental health as it had helped to alleviate some of the stress around providing for her children.”

Referral Agency - 2019, Hastings and Rother

“You are all angels from heaven, thank you for this wonderful food parcel. I am sure I don’t deserve it!”

Hamper Recipient - 2019, Hastings and Rother

Are you interested in becoming a volunteer for Surviving Christmas? Find out more on our Christmas 2021 page.