Writing Christmas cards to Haarlem’s elderly residents

It’s the festive season and a perfect time to do a good deed for fellow residents in the city, right? How about penning a little message on a Christmas card as a surprise for someone who might not otherwise receive any Christmas mail? It could also be a good chance for you to practice your Dutch!

It might be a bit ‘old school’ to still write Christmas cards and send them in the mail. Yeah, sure, we could just send via social media or apps or whatever the latest new-fangled way of sending a digital message, which is all cheaper and potentially more environmentally-friendly – but isn’t it still just a great surprise when you get a card dropping onto your mat through the front door? The joy and wonder of opening the envelope to discover who has taken the time to pen you a note in a card – and is it just me who won’t open a card until I’ve guessed who it might be from by deciphering the writing on the outside? So yes, I am a fan of cards. Every year I say to myself I won’t send physical cards anymore – and every year I still do. How about doing that for someone in your city that you don’t even know?

Haarlem Christmas card campaign

In this respect, we would like to spread the word about the Indebuurt Christmas card campaign for the elderly in Haarlem. For many in the city’s residential care homes, the festive period might not always be so festive or particularly joyous – especially this year with the coronavirus measures in place. It can make everyone involved happy to deliver Christmas cards with heartwarming messages to the elderly. The Indebuurt team state: “How nice would it be if the elderly in Haarlem also receive beautiful Christmas cards for the holidays this year? We are going to do something about that. Just before Christmas, the neighbourhood will surprise the residents of the four care organisations in Haarlem (Zorgbalans, Zorggroep Reinalda, Stichting Sint Jacob and Kennemerhart) with a large pile of Christmas wishes.”

Sending cards

It doesn’t just have to be a card with a Christmas wish; you can also include a drawing or photo or craftwork with your card. You can send a personal note or a wider message to all the neighbourhood.

The more cards the better! You’ll need to get scribbling quickly though as the deadline is 13 December. You can send your kerstkaarten to arrive at the Indebuurt Haarlem office before that date or drop them off in person at Onze Victor’s Espresso Specialty Coffee. More details here.


Carmel McNamara