THE ‘Thinking of You’ campaign run by intu Milton Keynes shopping centre has been praised by recipients who received letters from people across the world.
The festive project, which asked people to write a letter to an older person spending Christmas alone, received an unprecedented response, even reaching communities overseas.
More than 300 letters were sent from schools, community groups and individuals of all ages in the region and from other countries.
Schools in Germany, the Netherlands and Czech Republic heard about the initiative and asked students to write letters to be added to the hampers created by intu Milton Keynes. Sending Christmas wishes, stories of their families and some people even sharing photos, the personal letters were added to boxes for people to read over the festive period.
Age UK Milton Keynes delivered over 100 boxes to people in the local community few days before Christmas, following strict Covid measures.
Vince, who is nearly 80 and lives alone, voiced his gratitude. “It is nice to know that people out there care about older people. It is always nice to receive presents and thank you – it has made my day.”
Vivienne is nearly 90 had a tear in her eye when she received her gift. “It is like belonging to big family with the support received from Age UK Milton Keynes,” she said. “The gift shows such kindness and thought.”
Shelley Peppard, general manager at intu Milton Keynes said: “Words cannot explain the emotions that the team and myself are feeling right now. We have a huge sense of pride in our local community and for the kindness they have shown over the past six weeks.
“The letters received have been wonderfully touching and thoughtful and to receive them from children from other countries is fantastic.
“I want every person that wrote a letter to know how much this will mean to an older person this Christmas. These people do not see anyone other than their carer so receiving a letter and some treats will make a wonderful difference. Thank you to every person that has supported us and especially to Age UK Milton Keynes for helping to deliver our idea to those that need it the most.”
Letters received from today will still be delivered to people in the Milton Keynes community.
Special thanks to: Denbigh School; Akeley Wood Junior School and Nursery; Crossway Church Youth Fellowship; Dansk Skoleforening for Sydslesvig; Germany and Bouwens van der Boije college in the Netherlands; the O2 in intu Milton Keynes; the Milton Keynes Community Foundation; Network Rail; MK Pulse and Milton-Keynesia.