Feel­ing blue at Christ­mas time in Levin

Horowhenua Chronicle - - NEWS -

For the sec­ond year run­ning the Green­house Com­mu­nity is creat­ing a safe space for peo­ple who find the Christ­mas sea­son a bit of strug­gle.

When ad­verts, stores, and con­ver­sa­tions are filled with talk of ‘joy’ and ‘be­ing merry’, par­ties and cel­e­bra­tions, this can some­times make the fes­tive sea­son even more dif­fi­cult for those who find it a hard time.

On De­cem­ber 17 the Green­house Com­mu­nity is hold­ing a Blue Christ­mas gath­er­ing in the lounge of St Mary’s Church on the cor­ner of Manch­ester St from 5.30-7pm. Peo­ple can drop in at any time and stay for as lit­tle or long as they like. En­try is free.

There will not be a tra­di­tional Church ser­vice, but a range of gen­tle ac­tiv­i­ties and re­flec­tive spa­ces where it is safe for peo­ple to cre­atively ex­press their strug­gles at Christ­mas.

Peo­ple will be avail­able to chat and hot drinks and nib­bles will be pro­vided.

The Green­house Com­mu­nity ac­knowl­edges that for peo­ple with lim­ited money, men­tal health strug­gles, ad­dic­tions, iso­la­tion from friends and fam­ily, or who have lost loved ones Christ­mas can in­ten­sify feel­ings of lone­li­ness, grief, anger and de­pres­sion.

There are plenty of op­por­tu­ni­ties to cel­e­brate Christ­mas and they want to pro­vide an op­por­tu­nity to ac­knowl­edge peo­ple’s strug­gles and pro­vide sup­port and com­mu­nity.

“It was a re­lief to ac­knowl­edge the sad­ness I feel at Christ­mas time, and it was heal­ing for peo­ple who came to take a mo­ment to be real about their strug­gles and to have a mo­ment away from the busi­ness of the hol­i­day sea­son,” lo­cal coun­sel­lor Adi Brew­er­ton said of last year’s Blue Christ­mas gath­er­ing.

The con­cept of Blue Christ­mas comes from the north­ern hemi­sphere where the long­est night of the year is usu­ally a few days be­fore Christ­mas Day, con­tribut­ing to the dark­ness peo­ple ex­pe­ri­ence.

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