We know this year’s festive period is not what we had all hoped for, and that many local people are struggling at this time of year; however we are heartened by the activities in our local communities and third sector to try and make this Christmas the best it can be for all our Falkirk area residents.
Whether they are going the extra mile to provide safe, fun activities, spreading some festive cheer, or making sure everyone can have a special Christmas meal and some gifts to look forward to, as ever, the people of Falkirk are showing a true “Community Christmas” spirit.
Please find a list below of opportunities to get involved in your community this Christmas:
- At Home
A great idea, and the power of social media, has led to a Falkirk woman’s plan to introduce some festive magic to the Forth Valley area going worldwide! She proposed a “Santa’s Xmas Eve Jingle” and was quickly overwhelmed with interest in her idea, from all over the globe. You can join the “Worldwide Santa’s Xmas Eve Jingle” Facebook group to find out more.
Forth Environment Link are hosting their Virtual Green Christmas event, from Monday 7th December – Sunday 13th December, this will include foodie podcasts, family baking workshops, festive eco-decoration sessions, winter bike maintenance tips and more! You can book your free place for the Green Christmas events on the TicketTailor website; all events will be available on their Facebook page later.
Library Love Falkirk have pulled together a great list of literary-themed activities for a range of ages, and interests, that can be accessed online from a cosy chair in your own home – visit their “Festive Fun From Your Front Room” blog for more information.
Linlithgow Union Canal Society (LUCS) couldn’t hold their annual festive boat trips because of COVID restrictions, however, in partnership with Santa, they have produced a short film about Santa’s trip to Linlithgow. Local families can now enjoy “Santa and His Mischievous Elves”, available on the LUCS YouTube channel.
Falkirk Community Trust have filmed their very own Mrs Clause reading a wee story – The Gruffalo in Scots – for all the boys and girls (and their grown-ups) to listen to on a cosy festive evening. You can tune in to hear Mrs Clause now on the Falkirk Community Trust Facebook page.
Fans of festive TV will be pleased to see that Magic Light, the award-winning production company who have brought The Gruffalo, the Gruffalo’s Child, Stick Man and other favourites to life in previous years, have announced their latest offering – “Zog and the Flying Doctors”. Visit the Magic Light Facebook page to check where and when you can watch Zog and the Flying Doctors, as well as other favourites, this year.
- Family Fun
Falkirk Delivers are holding a “Toy Soldier Hunt” in Falkirk Town Centre over the festive period; from Friday 6th November you can collect or download an entry form and map before finding the toy soldiers hiding in shop windows and submitting your entry for the chance to win 1 of 12 prizes. Find out more about this fun, festive activity on the Falkirk Delivers website.
Roots Food Bank in Bonnybridge have announced that they are in talks with Santa to make sure he can make a safe visit to see children in their local community – times and dates to be confirmed! Check in on the Roots Facebook page for more details in the run up to Christmas.
Falkirk Community Trust invite families for a Winter Walk around Muiravonside Country Park to complete the “Santa’s Helpers Stocking Scramble” – you can download the Stocking Scramble map and information sheet from the Falkirk Community Trust website, or check on the Falkirk Parks Facebook page.
Bonnybridge Gala Day Committee, in partnership with local business Auto Doctor, have announced that they will go ahead with their Annual Santa Run. Please visit the Auto Doctor Facebook page for the latest information about where and when Santa will visit your area of Bonnybridge.
Throughout the month of December Asda cafes will offer children the chance to eat for free, as part of their “Fight Hunger Create Change” campaign. You can find out more about this campaign on the Asda website, or use the Asda Store Locator to find out where your nearest participating Asda store is.
The National Trust for Scotland website includes some interesting facts about our historic Scottish festive traditions, as well as recipes for some delicious traditional festive recipes – like these perkins biscuits or haggis sausage rolls.
Falkirk Food Connections give out regular bags of ingredients with in our local communities so the recipients can try out new recipes, recently they’ve been having a go at making festive biscuits, and might even have a go at recipes that include a less popular festive veg – the humble sprout. Visit the Falkirk Food Connections Facebook page for more seasonal cooking and baking ideas, and to find out other ways to get involved.
Love Food Hate Waste Scotland have plenty of resources to guide our local festive foodies this year, including a downloadable Christmas Meal Planner, recipe ideas and tips and tricks for reducing festive food waste. Visit the Love Food Hate Waste Scotland Facebook page to find out more!
Denny Community Support Group will gratefully receive donations from community members to add to the Christmas Hampers that their food project will provide this year. They have provided a handy “shopping list” to let people who want to donate know which items will be most helpful.
The Denny and Dunipace Toy Appeal Facebook group is a space where local people can offer or request pre-loved toys in the run-up to Christmas. They have also made an Amazon wishlist, or there are locations in Denny and Dunipace – where you see this poster – where you can make donations, if you prefer to do so in person.
Stoneywood Care’s “Christmas Surprise Appeal” is now open, you can visit the Stoneywood Care Facebook page to find out more about how you can donate to help all families in our communities have a magical Christmas this year.
Strathcarron Hospice invite anyone who may not be taking part in a “Secret Santa” this year, to instead donate your Secret Santa fund to the Hospice instead, to support their work. They have provided a safe, simple way to donate via text message – visit the Strathcarron Hospice Facebook page to find out how you can help.
The Dunelm retail store in Falkirk Retail Park has confirmed they are taking part in Dunelm’s “Delivering Joy” campaign – in their store shoppers will have the chance to chose a gift tag, with suggested gifts themes, and price range, so they can then purchase a gift that will be delivered to someone who is in need of a bit of festive cheer this Christmas.
Camelon Community Hub have launched their “Operation Christmas” appeal for this year – any pre-loved toys can be donated directly at the Hub on Ochiltree Terrace, Camelon or you can message the Camelon Community Hub Facebook page to arrange
Forth Valley Radio are hosting a Giftz4Kidz campaign this year, check the Forth Valley Radio Facebook page to find out about entering their prize draw or donate directly and help them reach their target on their JustGiving page.
Love Falkirk are working hard to make sure everyone in our local communities has a good festive period, you can check the Love Falkirk website for more information on how to contribute or the Love Falkirk Facebook page for fun ideas to contribute, such as their Reverse Advent Calendar appeal.
If you’d like to donate online to help local people impacted by domestic abuse this Christmas, you can do so on the Committed to Ending Abuse (CEA) JustGiving page.
If you would like to support Kersiebank Community Project’s festive food bank activities this year, a kind local resident is raffling a beautiful wreath in aid of the Project. You can also donate to their JustGiving page to contribute towards their aim of providing food and Christmas gifts for local children.
Bo’ness Food Pantry are gratefully receiving donations of food items, as well as cash donations if preferred, at set times – check the Bo’ness Food Pantry Facebook page for details of the times and dates when you can support them. The Pantry have also created a fun colouring page to run alongside their ‘Reverse Advent Calendar’ appeal so the whole family can get involved in supporting their local community, with the chance to win a festive hamper with each completed colouring page, and reverse advent donation.
The KLSB Community Pantry are accepting donations at a set time each week at their premises in Stenhousemuir, and have kindly produced a December Wishlist so anyone who wants to donate can find out which items will be most helpful at this time. Visit the KLSB Community Pantry Facebook page for more information on where and when you can donate, and to view their Wishlist.
- National Appeals
Age Scotland know that older people are one of the groups hardest hit by the impact of COVID this year and they have some ideas for you and your colleagues, friends or family to help. You can find out more about their Christmas Appeal, and register for some of their festive giving campaigns on their website.
Action for Children are accepting online donations for their “Be A Secret Santa” appeal – if you’d like to be a Secret Santa for a vulnerable child or young person this year please visit the Action for Children – Secret Santa website.
If you think we missed anything going on in your community, please contact our team by email: