Making a difference at Christmas time

Become a Silver Santa by donating, or support the delivery of presents to residents in care homes this Christmas by volunteering.

By getting involved, you will help bring joy into the lives of the residents. We need the support of your school, your friends, family, sports club – any group at all, or just you yourself to make donations, to wrap and deliver parcels, to hand them out on Christmas morning.

About the project

Can the excitement of waking up on Christmas morning ever truly fade? Even alongside all the planning, the organisation, the friends and family and the rush to get everything done, there is still one thing that makes it special. Watching your loved ones open a gift, seeing their face as they unwrap it, knowing that someone has thought of them, and wondered at what might make them smile.

But not everyone is remembered. For those who are forgotten at Christmas, who live in one of the 22,000 care homes in the UK, it can be an extremely lonely period. Many go without visitors, live with dementia, or are unable to leave the home. For these people especially, we have seen firsthand how much joy a gift can bring.

The Silver Santa project aims to give back the joy of Christmas, through the giving of stockings or individually packed and wrapped gift boxes to the residents of care homes.

Shining eyes

Residents tell us with shining eyes, of two experiences at Christmas.

The first is about waking up and there was a stocking on the end of their bed. For many this was the only ‘gift’ they received at Christmas. It was often a few small items, and things we might take for granted
today. Items mentioned include yo-yos and tangerines. It has to be remembered that during the years of the war, and those that followed, people didn’t have much, and these items were special, and very
treasured. They have also created indelible memories.

The other image residents tell us about is walking into a room, and there was a tree with boxes wrapped in brightly coloured Christmas paper underneath. It was a room that was kept for best, rarely heated apart from special occasions, and even to go in was a treat. At Christmas it was truly magical.

You too can help to continue that thread of magic with either of our two projects.

Case study: Silver Santa in York

See how the Silver Santa project has already brought joy to the residents of one care home in York.

Thank you for my lovely parcel. Your thoughts and efforts helped to bring some love and kindness into my Christmas. I wish you all the very best of happiness and good wishes for the future.

Care Home Resident