Light event spreads joy

Participant at 'Let Your Light Shine’ for Nairn Care Homes 2020

*This article was written by Nairn Connects Business Improvement District (BID).

A SPECTACLE of light to spread joy to the town’s care home residents has been hailed a success and the organisers now hope to make it an annual event.

‘Let Your Light Shine’ for Nairn Care Homes took place on Saturday [12th December 2020] with around 50 people taking part.

Attendees assembled at Whinnieknowe Care Home car park where they were assigned a care home route to individually walk, ensuring that social distancing guidance was met.

Residents at Whinnieknowe Care Home & Gardens, St. Olaf, The Manor, Queens Park Gardens, Nairn Hospital, Hebron House, Bruach House, Carolton Care, Davidson Villa, MacLean Court and Hillcrest House were all visited by people carrying lanterns, tea lights, and glow sticks that they had purchased via a small donation. The donations from the evening total around £100, which will go towards future care home activities.

Some of the care homes provided garden chairs in their grounds for attendees to sit at and sing Christmas carols. Many of the residents joined in and sang from the comfort of their indoor space, waving glowsticks in unison.

The event was organised by Sarah Coulson, Activity Co-ordinator at Whinnieknowe Care Home, with support from Nairn BID and Karen Kemp of the Red Cross shop.

Iona Gibson, Nairn BID Admin Assistant said: “The event was a huge success. We worked very closely with the Highland Council and Police Scotland to ensure that all the regulations were adhered to. We used the Protect Highland app so that everyone was ‘logged’ into the event and we had to be nimble with making changes at the last minute. Thankfully, we were able to meet our goal of spreading joy and light to the care home residents and to the wider community.”

Great turnout
Iona added: “Given the restrictions, we are delighted with the turnout and morale, and plan to host a similar spectacle next year. I was personally moved by our local Nairn heroes who came to support, such as our renowned postie, Amanda, who came dressed as a glowing Christmas pudding and widened the smiles of everyone in attendance.

“My biggest thanks go to Sarah, who not only put the idea out there but was also the driving force behind it. Without her, the event would not have been accomplished in such a successful way, if at all. I hope we can continue to make this happen for years to come.”

Sarah Coulson who organised the event explained that December is usually a busy time in care homes and wanted to ensure the residents has something to enjoy.

“Usually Whinnieknowe is full of visitors and entertainers throughout December.  As that is not possible this year, I was thinking of different ways to make Christmas special for our residents.  I thought about years gone by, when everyone lived far more simply and I had the idea of lanterns and carols.  It is also extremely important for our residents to continue to be included in the local community.”

She added: “I simply wanted to bring some joy to our residents and to others in the town and going by the beautiful smiles of residents and the many lovely comments, I believe we succeeded.  I’m so grateful to everyone who supported us and helped to make my idea a reality.  I could not have done it without the help I received from Iona, at Nairn BID, who was full of enthusiasm and encouragement.  I’d like to say thank you for the generous donations we received and for the kindness of everybody who attended.”

Our thanks go to Nairn Connects (BID) for allowing us to share their article. The original, with pictures, can be found here.

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