Spreading the love and Christmas Spirit in Bayside 2018!

Spreading the love and Christmas Spirit!

For many Christmas is a time of joy and giving, fun and festivities. But for many, they can find this time of year particularly challenging with household budgets stretched and hardships due to their individual circumstances. For the third year in a row, the Rotary Clubs of Brighton and Hampton in conjunction with Hampton RSL, hosted the Bayside Family Christmas event to spread some joy to some local families.

Thanks to the support of Brighton and Hampton Rotary Clubs, Hampton RSL, Bayside City Council, Highett Neighbourhood House, Bayside Youth Services and members of Victoria Police, plus generous donations from Christmas Kingdom (Heartfelt thanks for the amazing Santa’s throne and Christmas grotto), St Leonard’s College, K-Mart, Moose Toys, JB Hi-Fi, St Kilda Football Club, Buxton Hampton East, Bunnings and Market Import, vulnerable families who usually do it tougher than most at this time of year, with pre- and school aged kids (1 to 16 years old) were able to join in some Christmas cheer.  

BayCISS, Family Life and Highett Neighbourhood House invited their service users to forget about their troubles for a while with activities, entertainment and a good hearty Christmas meal. This event is a true collaboration, with locals from a variety of organisations and service groups, spreading Christmas Cheer by volunteering time, funds and expertise with event planning, traditional fare and games/activities in a community atmosphere with their loved ones.

There was fun for young and old with an amazing magician, face painting, hair braiding, arts and crafts, activities such as lawn bowls, outdoor activities such as giant Jenga, Connect 4, ball games etc plus a fabulous caricature artist. Bayside Mayor, Michael Heffernan and Goldstein MP Tim Wilson interrupted busy schedules to join in the festivities. A lovely traditional Christmas dinner was served up to one and all, then followed by a stampede of young reindeer bringing in a very special guest in his resplendent red suit. With a twinkle in his eye and his booming “Ho Ho Ho”, Santa was able to reward the good girls and boys (and their parents) with some early Christmas gifts.

The event would not have been possible without the hard work and contributions of many behind the scenes – a shout out and thanks to Arran Ferguson (Bayside Citizen of the Year), Mike Anglim, Bill (Choc) Mirabito, Christine Lindsey, Eddie McGarry, Erica Bredon (and her boys), Lissy Kelly, Melanie Tighe, Karyn Doyle, Jan Eriksen, Alan Jarrott, Luiza Boscolo Muylaert, Geoff Tickner, Rhonda Pincott, Robyn and Maurice Lichter, 1st Sandringham Cubs, Louise  Ferguson, Lexi Ferguson, Amelie Taylor plus Jan and President Norm Thomas. Thank you to all!

You can find the photo album for this event via this link...

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