Timaru festive dinner may be back on menu

18:36, Dec 04 2012
101 christmas dinner
GOODWILL: 101 Mental Wellness Drop-in Centre staff, from left, Lou Adams, Mark Bourassa and John Fallon, discuss their options after agreeing to host this year’s Timaru Community Christmas Dinner. Now they just need help from the community to make it happen.

Timaru's Community Christmas Dinner could soon be back on the agenda.

Staff at 101, the Mental Wellness Drop-in Centre, have stepped up to the challenge after it was announced last month that the dinner would not be going ahead, because of a lack of co-ordinators.

Jericho Road Charitable Trust has hosted the event for the past four years, with the help of 30 volunteers and 12 key people to co-ordinate the day in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

However, this time around there were not enough helpers to assist with the event, which usually attracts 250 to 300 people.

Since the cancellation announcement, 101's Mark Bourassa, John Fallon and Lou Adams have been working tirelessly to recruit helpers and apply for grants to ensure the popular event can still go ahead.

The group has applied for $1500 of grants and has tentatively hired the Caroline Bay Hall for December 25.


Mr Bourassa said many more details are being "ironed out", but help from the wider community is still required before the event can definitely go ahead.

He said the response so far was pleasing.

"We've done some shoulder-tapping and, I have to tell you, the community response has been absolutely amazing."

Mr Fallon said he was not surprised at the response so far.

"Timaru is like that."

The group will make a final decision by December 11 about whether it has what it takes to host the event.

If you want to help make this year's Community Christmas Dinner happen, contact Mark Bourassa on (03) 929 2236 or Lou Adams on (03) 686 2046.

The Timaru Herald