Welcome to the KCOM Christmas Wishlist Advent Calendar!

Every day we’ll be opening another window on our festive calendar to reveal another local group who we’re helping to make this a Christmas to remember.

After what’s been another challenging year for many people, we asked you for suggestions who most deserved a helping hand this Christmas – and you didn’t disappoint with some brilliant ideas.

So, check back here every day to see another window opened and another community group from across Hull, East Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire receive some of that KCOM festive good stuff in the run up to December 25.

Happy Christmas everyone!

1. Crowle Christmas Lights

Christmas isn’t Christmas until the twinkle of festive lights arrives – and not many towns do it better than Crowle, in North Lincolnshire.

We’re delighted to kick off our Wishlist Advent Calendar, helping community groups right across the KCOM region, by supporting The Crowle Christmas Lights Committee to host their big switch on this weekend in Market Square.

Despite the best efforts of Storm Arwen, festive spirits couldn’t be dampened as hundreds of people attend the big event to see Santa arrive, pick up some yuletide treats from local stallholders and enjoy a glass of mulled wine or two.

Lights committee charman Peter Enefer, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with KCOM for this year’s Crowle Christmas lights and bringing some festive cheer to the town. The Christmas lights are a highlight of the year for many people and really help to bring the community together so the support from KCOM is very much appreciated.”

 

 

2. Emmaus

It’s Day Two on our Christmas Wishlist advent calendar and today we’re heading to Hull’s brilliant Emmaus charity to unpack some more KCOM good stuff.

Emmaus supports formerly homeless people by giving them a place to call home, meaningful work in a social enterprise and an opportunity to get back on their feet again.

For many who experience homelessness, one of the biggest obstacles they must overcome is a loss of self-esteem. Emmaus provides people with a stable home and the opportunity to regain their self-worth, making a real contribution to their community.

To help this brilliant cause, KCOM Christmas Wishlist has donated a TV to the charity’s east Hull centre, where up to 30 of Emmaus companions live. The TV, which is also being installed by KCOM staff, will form the focus of the centre’s new cosy social room where the companions can relax.

To give the social area a boost, KCOM is also funding a festive revamp of the social area, which will feature new curtains, new flooring and a lick of paint.

Rosie Varley, Emmaus volunteer coordinator, said: “This will be a massive help to us and make a real difference to our companions who live here by creating a welcoming space where they can come and socialise and relax. 

“Christmas can be a tough time for many people but this will help us to bring our companions  together, give them a space where they can talk to each other and promote social inclusion. It’s a great Christmas present.” 

To donate or to find our more about Emmaus’s great work across Hull and East Yorkshire visit www.emmaushull.org

3. Breakfast with Santa

Day three on our Christmas Wishlist Advent Calendar and this one is truly magical.

A team of KCOM elves was lucky enough to be invited to take part in the Hull Children’s University’s 

Breakfast with Santa yesterday, where youngsters from one of the most deprived areas of Hull were able to meet with Father Christmas himself.

Taking time out from his hectic schedule, Santa parked his sleigh in east Hull before distributing 47 presents bought by KCOM employees to an excited roomful of youngsters.

The day was packed with festive good stuff including a healthy breakfast, a Christmas story and  dancing to some Christmas music before Santa produced presents including everything from Paw Patrol to Pokemon, Monster Trucks, Lego and Baby Yodas – as had been requested on the youngsters’ Christmas wish lists.

A KCOM elf called Louise said: “It was utterly magical. The kids had an absolutely brilliant time and to see their faces light up when Santa arrived was the absolute best.

“It was a fantastic event to be part of and Hull Children’s University do an amazing job to bring hope and joy to the lives of so many kids. Events like this are the true meaning of Christmas for me.”

Rose James, Hull Children’s University partnership manager, said: “We’d like to thank KCOM for supporting the Breakfast with Santa initiative. Every year, Santa and his elves pay a visit to five classes of children where they bring them a special Christmas breakfast, have a Christmas story and then get given presents.

“The KCOM elves have supplied presents and a Christmas book for 47 local children, some of which may otherwise not get anything else for Christmas this year. KCOM have helped us to bring some Christmas magic to children who need it the most.”

To find out more about Hull Children’s University and the fantastic work they do supporting youngsters across the region visit https://hullchildrensuniversity.com/. 

4. Warm Hug

Christmas Eve is a special time for children – full of wonder and anticipation ahead of the big day.

That’s why for Day Four of our Christmas Wishlist Advent Calendar we’ve teamed up with the Hull Letterbox Club, working alongside Hull Children’s University, to help provide youngsters in care with a “Warm Hug” Christmas Eve treat.

Volunteers from KCOM provided, packed and delivered bags packed with good stuff to help spread a festive glow on Christmas Eve. The bags included a hot chocolate and marshmallows, a star bauble to decorate, some toasty warm Christmas socks and some reindeer dust to help guide Rudolf down to his destination.

Amy Mercer, Hull Letterbox Club Coordinator, said: “As a child in care, Christmas can be a reminder of many things. The families they no longer see, the places they no longer live and for some, this may be their first real Christmas.

“We know this gift will put a smile on their faces and let them know that someone, somewhere is thinking of them.”

When not focused on all-things festive, Hull Letterbox Club works specifically with looked after children in year groups 3 to 7 using one-to-one tutoring and personalised book parcels, providing a high quality reading experience. The programme also helps support a smooth transition from primary school to secondary school.

The Letterbox Club is more than just a reading programme. It’s an opportunity to make new friends, learn new skills, be rewarded, bond with carers and even visit some popular local attractions.

To learn more about it visit here.

5. Hallgarth Residential Home

Caring for the elderly has certainly had its challenges during the past few years.

But throughout the global pandemic, careers across our region have often been the unsung heroes providing comfort and support for older people during what have been long periods of isolation and uncertainty.

That’s why on Day Five of our Christmas Wishlist advent Calendar we’re saluting all our key care workers and teaming up with Hallgarth Residential Home in Cottingham, where the staff have all been doing a sterling job.

Nominated by a local resident, we dropped in at Hallgarth to donate a Samsung Galaxy Tablet which it will now raffle to raise funds for activities for residents.

Manager Emma Chearman said: “This is lovely present and will go toward raising funds so that we can do extra things like buy prizes for the bingo or maybe organise group activities fir the residents. Happy Christmas!”