National charity & Sussex businesses serve festive cheer

In a show of festive collaboration between businesses and the third sector, the national charity Friends of the Elderly, with partners Travel Places and Sussex County Cricket Ground, put on a Christmas party for Brighton’s older residents last Wednesday.Friends of the Elderly - Bighton Christmas lunch medium

Almost 100 older people from across the Brighton area got together at the cricket ground to enjoy an afternoon of festive fun funded by donations from nine Sussex-based companies; Travel Places, EMC, Beavis Morgan, IEP, Leumi, lovelocaljobs.com, Preston Insurance, See That and Future Proof.

Guest Monica, 72, said: “It’s so nice to be remembered. I’m on my own this Christmas and it all goes quiet for me on 25th, but it’s nice that people put things like this on, so on Christmas Day I can think back to all the fun I’ve had today.” 

Friends of the Elderly Brighton Christmas lunch 3 mediumThe free Christmas lunch provided an opportunity for guests to socialise and meet new people. There was entertainment from the Brighton Male Voice Choir who sang a variety of Christmas songs as well as some non-festive old favourites.

Yvonne Martin, Corporate and Trust Fundraising Manager at Friends of the Elderly, commented: “This was the fourth year of us hosting this Christmas party with Travel Places and Sussex County Cricket Ground and every year it gets better and better. At Friends of the Elderly we work hard to reduce the impact of loneliness amongst older people and this occasion not only offers guests companionship on the day but often leads to longer lasting friendships.”