Edinburgh Cheer

October 5, 2015
Stronger Communities

Edinburgh Cheer is a unique city-wide partnership with a simple aim at its heart – to help make Scotland’s Capital the kindest city during the festive period. Charities play a major part, working with local organisations and partners to identify and provide support to those most in need of festive cheer.

The idea took root on Christmas Day, 2016, when Hibernian – through the GameChanger partnership involving the Club, Hibernian Community Foundation and the Edinburgh Health and Social Care Partnership - opened the stadium doors and provided a free Christmas lunch for more than 100 people who might otherwise have been on their own, or who had less to look forward to than most other people. The event was supported at a local level by Tesco.

The following year traditional sporting rivals Hibernian and Heart of Midlothian joined forces for the campaign, through the GameChanger partnership and the Big Hearts Community Trust, and the Evening News adopted Edinburgh Cheer as its Christmas Campaign to help drive interest and participation.

A much fuller programme was developed and supported city-wide by Tesco, by Network Rail and also by Lothian Buses.  A series of events was held at both grounds, involving hundreds of people, local community events were supported, all-weather sleeping bags were purchased for the city’s rough sleepers, and almost 300 people enjoyed a fun and happy Christmas Day lunch, with transport provided free of charge by volunteers from Central Taxis.

This year, we are aiming to make 2018 festive period even kinder. Edinburgh Cheer will:

  • Launch Edinburgh Cheer with our media partner Edinburgh Evening News on 1 December encouraging all citizens to play an active part in making the city cheerful and kind with our media partner Edinburgh Evening News.  We are delighted that Joe Fitzpatrick MSP, Minister for Public Health, Sport and Wellbeing will join us for the launch
  • Encourage all to join in our Christmas Singalong as we travel throughout the city centre on our Edinburgh Cheer Bus on 7 December
  • Produce and make available a helpful booklet  with our partners Health in Mind and Story Contracting  with info and advice on looking after yourself during a time that some people can find difficult
  • Join us and children from Redhall Primary School for switching on the Christmas tree lights at Waverley Station
  • Kick off Tesco’s Christmas  Campaign at 2.00 pm on 3 December at Tesco, Corstorphine
  • Join in the fun at Tesco’s Edinburgh Cheer engagement event is Tesco stores in and around Edinburgh on Friday the 7th and Saturday the 8th of December
  • Encourage all to join in our Christmas Singalong as we travel on our Edinburgh Cheer Bus provided by our partners Lothian Buses on 7th December, leaving from Waverley Bridge at 1.00 pm
  • Invite people to join us for coffee and breakfast cheer prepared by The Prep Table in Waverley Station from 9.00 to 11.00 am on 11th December with our partners Network Rail and Story Contracting
  • With our partners Cyrenians post regular ‘Countdown to a Conflict-free Christmas’ blogs
  • Host a very special football match at 11.00 am on 15th December at the Meadows evoking the spirit of the match played on Christmas Day 1914
  • Open up Hibernian and Hearts  stadiums inviting people to come and enjoy good food and company on Christmas Day with support from Central Taxis and Tesco

This year, we are aiming to make 2018 festive period even kinder. Edinburgh Cheer will:

  • Provide Christmas hampers for 1000 city families in need, in partnership with Destiny Church and Story Contractors – visitdestinyedinburgh.com to find out more
  • Provide warm clothing for the city’s rough sleepers in partnership with Streetwork and Cyrenians
  • Throughout December support a number of our partners’ Christmas parties and events
  • Once again create a very warm Christmas glow with a screening of “White Christmas” on 18th December at 7.00pm, at Hibernian Football Club, with delicious cinema snacks prepared by Prep Table

As part of Edinburgh Cheer, the Big Hearts Community Trust will:

  • Organise a Foodbank Collection at Tynecastle Stadium on 2 December in partnership with Community One Stop Shop and Jambos Kickback to help provide food and vital supplies
  • Host a free ‘Memories Christmas Lunch’ at Tynecastle Park on 11 December, welcoming isolated older people from across the Football and Edinburgh Memories projects and further community groups.
  • Work with local schools to support children and families who are particularly vulnerable during the Christmas Holidays, providing food, gifts and festive activities at Tynecastle Park

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