With the seemingly endless turbulence of 2020, many of us are looking forward to Christmas more than ever as a time to come together with our loved ones. As teaching winds down and our thoughts turn towards the holidays, there are lots of different ways we can spread kindness and pull together in our communities to end the year off with hope.
SU Volunteering are running a ‘Compassion at Christmas’ campaign which has a number of great initiatives to support some of the most vulnerable members of our community this festive period. With activities ranging from the annual Santa Dash to writing Christmas cards to isolated adults, make sure you visit the page to see if there is something you can do to make someone’s day. For some, Christmas can be a lonely time and local Bath organisation 3SG are looking for volunteers to call someone in need on Christmas day. Even if you just give someone a ring to have a conversation about festive movie classics, you can hopefully provide a bit of light in what would otherwise be a tough day.
As the recommended travel window has left many students in a rush to pack up and return home, if you have any unopened food which you won’t be needing, head down to your local food bank (often after the tills in supermarkets) to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. If you are on campus, there are a number of drop-off points that are collecting food and clothing for the Genesis Trust who can distribute it to those who need it most.
Over the year, many of us have become more connected to our natural world and so this Christmas there are ways to be kind to our earth after it has provided us with much needed release from lockdown. Why not opt for the nut roast instead of the meat option or use recyclable wrapping paper for the gifts we can’t wait to see opened? We can also make our gifts more sustainable by choosing those that are made to last from local independent shops who need our support. You could even do away with physical items and buy them an experience instead.
During these festivities it is equally important to carve out time for yourself. We’ve all had to build resilience this year and it’s worth taking a moment to reflect on how far we have come. Gratitude is a really positive way to boost your wellbeing so you could take five minutes a day to list the people and things that bring you joy.
Even if this year didn’t go quite how we were hoping, it has been an opportunity to realign our values and prioritise kindness. Every kind act, no matter how small, lifts both you and the people around you up so go and spread some good vibes this Christmas!