The festive period should be a time of joy, but with the island having closed borders this year, many people face a potentially lonely Christmas.
This year, local girl Sarah Mercer is encouraging us all to make the most of Christmas by embracing the #TogetheratChristmas campaign. The campaign intends to encourage everyone to show some festive spirit and band together as a community.
Sarah hopes to achieve this in a couple of ways. Firstly, she wants to highlight the events going on during Christmas. These include events at:
The Nag’s Head
Roots by the Sea
Dave’s Delicious Dogs in Ramsey
Sarah is also encouraging us to open our doors to our friends and neighbours who might be alone this Christmas. It’s time to band together again, just like we did over lockdown. She came up with the idea of the initiative after reflecting on the fact that her partner would be alone, and if it weren’t for her family, he would have been alone on Christmas day. She thought about how he would not be the only one in that situation. Working at Craftworks Studio, Sarah and her Mum noticed that there were several grandparents and new parents making gifts for family they can’t be with this year, and thought that they needed to find a way to spread the love and make sure no one is alone on Christmas day. Sarah has been particularly inspired by the strong community spirit on the island over the past couple of months.
If you have a business, and want to get involved with the initiative, Sarah is encouraging you to follow the lead of venues like the Nag’s Head, if you are able to. Sarah acknowledges that this year has been a struggle for many hospitality venues- while it is very generous for venues to offer free Christmas meals, just opening the doors is a significant act that could make someone’s day. Sarah also hopes that community hubs and spaces could run Christmas potlucks, so people know there is a place where they won’t be alone, and can share love and food with others.
For individuals, Sarah is encouraging people to open their doors, message neighbourhood Whatsapps, call people you went shopping for during lockdown and invite them to Christmas lunches and dinners. Sarah stresses that it’s particularly important to reach out to those who are not on social media, or we know won’t be able to see their family this Christmas.
If you’re interested in the initiative, as a business or an individual, you can join the Facebook group here and/ or email firstname.lastname@example.org.