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Dear friend

As we reach the end of what for so many has been a truly awful year, I wanted to wish you a merry Christmas and to reflect on the moments of kindness and joy that we have still managed to share in 2020.
 
Covid ripped through our communities – hitting Croydon early and hard. We have lost many lives too early, and families suffered as they couldn’t comfort loved ones or say goodbye. But the community leapt into action, supporting vulnerable people with food and supplies. The generosity of the people of Croydon shone out as we clapped our key workers every week.
 
Covid is now rising fast again and so many businesses are struggling without the same levels of support available that there was in the first lock down. We aren’t clapping our key workers anymore, but they are working just as hard to keep us safe and ensure we get the services were need.
 
I know you will all be making difficult decisions about what to do over the holidays – whether or not to see families and loved ones. There are today nearly 110 patients with covid in Croydon University Hospital. Although it is fantastic that CUH was the second hospital in the country to start the vaccination process, and has vaccinated over 2000 people already, we are in the midst of a spike in the disease and it remains absolutely crucial that we follow the rules about washing hands, wearing masks and social distancing. To check the guidance, click here. 
 
Can you donate this Christmas?
 
There will be many families across Croydon and the country who are struggling financially this Christmas. Over the course of the pandemic, I have been working closely with local foodbanks and voluntary organisations. Their success in fending off food poverty in our community would not be possible without the generosity of people like you.
 
At this time of giving I ask that you consider donating to a local foodbank. You can donate to Croydon Voluntary Action, who’s donations flyer and Christmas message is below. Or you can donate to one of the local foodbanks listed on my website here.
 
Myself and my team wish you all the very best. Keep safe and keep well.
 
Very best wishes,
 
Sarah 

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