Gatherings arranged for Christmas dinner

For the second consecutive year, NeighbourLink is organizing a Christmas match-up.

For the second consecutive year, NeighbourLink is organizing a Christmas match-up, connecting people who would be alone for the holiday with those who have extra spaces at their tables.

Mirjana Komljenovic of NeighbourLink said the first match-up, last Christmas, was a success.

A dozen families offered their homes for guests, while around half a dozen guests attended.

“I hope to double those numbers this year,” Komljenovic said, “but I think it’s going to take a few years to build the momentum.”

She said those who are alone at Christmas have many stories.

Some are single people with no family in the area. Others are on their own because of a variety of circumstances.

Last year, one of the women who participated was a single mother whose ex-husband had the children for Christmas Day.

“There are all sorts of reasons people are alone for Christmas,” Komljenovic said. “There is a lot of pressure at this time of year. There is a lot of despair. It doesn’t need to be like that.”

She said those who participate, as hosts or as guests, may create friendships as a result.

Those interested in participating, either as a host or as a guest, are asked to contact NeighbourLink by phone at 250-404-4673, online at nlinksummer.ca/contact-us/ or by email at nl.summerland@gmail.com by Dec. 22.