SWCHS OAP Party 'with a twist'


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Each year, SWCHS hosts a Christmas party for the elderly citizens of Saffron Walden. It is a lovely evening of bingo, music, dancing, food and Christmas spirit. Perhaps the most important part of the evening is the social interaction between the teenagers and the elderly, of whom the latter can often find the winter period greatly lonely. As I’m sure you can imagine, due to COVID-19, this project cannot go ahead in its conventional form this year, the Sixth Form Student Union and a group of Sixth Form volunteers, are determined that the party go ahead in some capacity.

Excitingly, we have set up a ‘Buddy System’ whereby a student from SWCHS is paired up with a usual attendee of the party. The student will be calling their Buddy on a weekly basis over the Christmas period, send them a Christmas card and establish an inter-generational relationship, which we hope will extend past the Christmas season. We have also advertised in the local newspaper to widen the Buddy system out to the general Saffron Walden Community who do not usually attend the OAP Party. We also hope to provide a Christmas gift/small hamper for all the elderly citizens who take part in the Buddy scheme.

There are still spaces available on the Buddy programme so if you know of anyone who you think might benefit from a Buddy this Christmas, please do get in touch to sign them up. Contact details will be given below.

We are also really hoping that you might be willing to support us in our efforts to create the hampers for the OAPs taking part in the scheme this Christmas. We are looking for any donation - be it in the form of items that we can include in the hampers - or money that we can use to purchase these items. This could include: non-perishable food, alcoholic or nonalcoholic beverages or suitable gifts. Any donation, however big, however small would be invaluable in allowing us to carry out this ‘alternative’ Christmas party. If you would like to donate any physical items, please contact us via email on OAPPartySWCHS@hotmail.com. Please also use these details to sign an OAP up for the scheme. Or, if you would like to donate financially you can do this via Wisepay.

Similarly, instead of using hamper baskets, we have decided to use shoeboxes wrapped in Christmas paper to put the items in. It would be of great help to us if you would be happy to wrap and donate an old shoe box for this scheme. Please send shoe boxes in via your children who can drop them off at their Year Offices. Once again, we are hugely grateful for any support you may be able to provide as we attempt to bring some festive joy to the elderly of Saffron Walden this year.

Many thanks,

Sixth Form Student Union