Happy Christmas and Thank You ALL

Carevan Blacktown’s Christmas celebrations are done and dusted for another year. Always our busiest and ‘buzziest’ night of the year and 2020 was no exception. 💚
We served large numbers, around 150 people, well in excess of previous years and brought tinselled happiness and some of Santa’s magic to end this challenging year by way of a scrummy meal, food parcels and Chrissy Hampers, gifts and hygiene and care packages, to add a little pizazz to the Christmas Season and sprinkle some sparkle around the community.
We cannot begin, well we can actually but we may not finish, to express our enormous gratitude and try to offer up adequate THANKS to our generous and exceptionally kind community. YOU have ensured that the community Carevan serves on your behalf, has had a very Bountiful and Merry Christmas season…
Heavenly THANKS to the angels and big-hearted community members who offered time, donations and feet on the ground, hands to put together hampers, wrap presents, serve food and endless cups of tea and yet more kindly souls to hand out those hampers, food and care packs, set up and wait tables and try (successfully, we think) to instil some of Christmas’s special vibe, into each and every interaction.
These wonderful members of the community and honorary Carevan volunteers, included a handful of children and their lovely parents, decorating trees, laying tables and hanging lights, tidying up, making up hampers and being generally amazing. They worked tirelessly and constantly throughout a long day, with the sort of tenacity that as the song lyrics go, were ‘making spirits bright’ Children it’s said, make Christmas special and these kids put in as much as anyone got out of our celebrations! THANKS Breanna, Taylor, James, Wayne, Melody and Dale! 🎄
THANKS to the various Carevan volunteers past and present, regular friends and supporters, who also popped in and out throughout the day to pack hampers and prepare and serve the meals. THANKS Dave and Rachel, Bill and Eileen, both Natalies, Daniel, Tracey, Jade and Taz, James, Paul, Karen, Annie, Matthew, Alison, Colin, Linh, Annie and Stewart, Michael, Lliam, Karenza, Joel, Cameron… You are an awesome army of care and compassion and we are blessed to have such a team.
Thanks to Blanket Patrol Western Sydney, Carevan’s buddies and an awesome team in their own right, who joined us to take care of the clothing and special items of love and warmth .. Lissa, Pat and Hezekiah … you are the Christmas Spirit of giving its very self.
Tremendous THANKS to Mayor Tony Bleasdale and Deputy Mayor, Julie Griffiths, 💚 who took time out of very busy seasonal schedules to come and have a chat, make a cuppa and hand out hampers to members of their happy and grateful community.
THANKS to all the organisations and individuals who generously provided tinned food, treats, hygiene and pantry items and gifts galore for the hampers; the Blacktown Sai Centre, Kellyville High school, the Kings Langley Scout Group, Blacktown Workers Club, Foodbank, Hunter Hampers, Share the Dignity, Jeni Simmons and friends, and the many other individuals who reached out to us to donate gifts and goods for Christmas time.
Thanks to Marlene and Glenda, Vic and Daniel’s neighbourhood locals for filling Santa’s sack and his sleigh to the brim with toys for children of all ages … and to Katie and Ellen for wrapping presents galore!🎁
Thanks to Robyn and Garry, to Merryn and Brenda and to the committee members for the Christmas fare with all the trimmings… Delicious trifle and a 4.2kg Xmas Pudding… not to mention the committee members kitchen wizardry in producing a meal fit for Queens and Kings of Lalor Park.
THANKS also for last-minute orders filled for chicken and extra Veg from our Xmas superstar ‘Lizzie Chicken’
Thanks to incredibly supportive Blacktown Council for use of the hall. Access to this great facility meant we were able to ‘deck the hall’ with lights and tinsel and could set up our first ever pretty Christma
s tree🎄. Big glittery THANKS to all the little hands that decorated that tree and placed presents for all the children, at its feet.
Community Christmas tables spilled out into the evening light with tables indoors and out, creating a lovely community meal together, social connection and good food in a COVID safe environment, with table service to add a special Christmas touch of dignity
Thanks to our committee; Kym, Kimbalee, Taylor and Lynne💚 for the tireless work behind the scenes and to the fluoro Green army who serve throughout the year and step up especially at Christmas to bring the year to a festive close …. 🎁
And huge cookies and cream love to our very own Santa, Bruce … a gentle man who is ‘Santa’ all year long with or without the suit… and his lovely other ½ Lyn, who kindly lends him to us each week 🎅

The evening was a resounding collaborative success and we are honoured to have been able to create such an event on the community’s behalf and because of its generosity.
Lastly but not ‘leastly’ this feast was followed a few days later by Christmas morning BBQ for some 30-40 guests. Always a popular event, we added a little more Christmas love, supported by the fabulous Pamela Rope and her colleagues and friends, who donate breaky items towards BBQ deliciousness, bread rolls and Christmas cakes. More hampers, cuppas and a laid-back lovely morning to see out the Carevan Christmas season … for many, this is the extent of their Christmas day and it’s a joy to be able to add a dash of community care and companionship… a perfect ending. 🎁Blue Year in Review Christmas Card-3
Carevan’s fluoro elves are all ‘santa’d’ out for another year and we are happy Carevanites. Readying ourselves for 2021, when hopefully the new ‘norm’ is a relaxed, happy and healthy one which, will see us reunited with friends and family… but in the meantime, THANKS for your love 💝and extraordinary care for the Carevan Family and those we serve.
We’ve added some photos, loads were taken but we’re mindful of folks privacy and dignity … but you can see glimpse from our gorgeously happy volunteer photos and pics, that this was a fab season, despite the trials and tribulations. Our care for each other and those most in need is not diminished by a tricky year but rather amplified .. ‘twas the season for it after all
OH… and THANKS to our amazing CEO Andrew, a rock and a rock star ⭐️ and a logistics master … who did more picking up, lifting, packing and general Carevan sleigh guiding than Rudolf 🦌 himself … THANK YOU
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year .. and see you in it

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