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Senior citizens benefit from Christmas celebration

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Lifting off: Carol Clarke, left, releases doves during a memorial service held before her annual seniors' Christmas celebration on December 3. Also pictured, from left, are Governor Rena Lalgie (fourth left), Anglican Bishop Nicholas Dill (third right), Minister of Social Development and Seniors Tinee Furbert (second right) and Minister of National Security Michael Weeks (right). (Photograph supplied)

Carol Clarke’s Christmas gift giving event for senior citizens keeps getting bigger.

More than 500 presents were given out at this year’s 25th anniversary event but the businesswoman and community worker is still getting requests a week later.

Rena Lalgie, the Governor, and Tinee Furbert, the Minister of Social Development and Seniors, joined other community leaders in greeting senior citizens last Saturday.

Ms Clarke has hosted holiday events for seniors for 25 years and has collaborated with Bermuda Overseas Missions in recent years. She said that this year’s drive-through party, held at her home and business, was the biggest yet.

She said: “500 gifts went to seniors on the day and I am still getting people who want more.

“I actually made 1,000 gifts. Some are for rest homes, some are for other entities and some are still to be picked up.”

Event attendees received many gifts, including grocery vouchers, socks and toiletries. Since the Covid-19 pandemic, the event has been a “drive-through”.

Ms Clarke plans to hand the reins for the annual event over to her niece and granddaughter next year, once she turns 65. However, she enjoys doing it too much to stop now.

“I keep telling myself that I am getting out of it, but every year it comes back and gets better and better,” she said.

“This is all from the heart and when you do something from your heart you get blessed; things come back to you, straightened together and running over.”

Ms Clarke has countless people and companies to thank for helping make the celebration such a success. Corporate sponsors included Validus, Sol Petroleum and Deloitte.

She said: “Thank you to everyone and anyone who had anything to do with Saturday and to everyone who has helped me throughout these 25 years.”

A senior citizen chats with Governor Rena Lalgie at Carol Clarke's annual Christmas celebration (photograph supplied)

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Published December 16, 2022 at 7:50 am (Updated December 16, 2022 at 7:50 am)

Senior citizens benefit from Christmas celebration

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