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Tuesday, 24 December 2013

last post for 2013 - or only post in December!

wooden animals on sale at
Ryedale House
Time flies, they say, when you are enjoying yourself. If that is so then December must have been a most enjoyable month. Much of it was taken up in organising Fairtrade stalls at several different venues. The goods had to be collected from Fairer World in York, www.fairerworldyork.co.uk/‎, taken to the venue, usually a school, and then the things left over, as well as the takings, picked up several days later. I did my best to minimise my mileage and usually managed to pick up or drop off at two places in one journey. One school ran out of jelly beans (yes Fairtrade) and earrings, but a friend in York picked  more of those up for me. I ran a stall myself at the local Council offices, the lovely staff in the canteen invite us there twice a year. This year shiny pens and children's toys were the most popular items. Last year it was earrings and bangles.

After the last few boxes of goods were returned to York and the money counted we had sold over £850 of Fairtrade goods. The schools keep something for their funds and the rest will help Fairer World continue to promote Fairtrade goods in York and its wider neighbourhood.


Sorry it's all gone
Meanwhile Coasties continued as usual, and I squeezed in a trip to see my grandsons. The last Coasties of the year was at Ravenscar, but not above Robin Hood's Bay as we usually are, but slightly further south, right by the 'centre' of the village. Those of you who know Ravenscar will understand the humour of the work centre! In a howling gale and some sharp showers we were cutting back the ever present blackthorn, a helpful off shore wind blew the cuttings far out to sea. However the best was at lunch time, warm mulled wine, mince pies and Christmas chocolate ginger biscuits as a thanks for all our work, thank you Bill and Andrew. www.northyorkmoors.org.uk

I had a trip to Leeds to see my friend, she has had a few problems in her new home, a break in and some precious things taken. Her friends have rallied round and I made several phone calls to try to sort other things out. Her phone is pay as you go, luckily I have a contract with masses of spare minutes; just as well as one call to her housing provider lasted over thirty minutes. We ate together, and I left her a little happier than when I had arrived.

So to the holidays. Short Stop is closed until the New Year, lassn.org.uk/, several of the long term homeless asylum seekers have been found a place to stay for the whole period, others have friends who can cope for the holidays with an extra mouth to feed, but it will not be easy.

As usual much voluntary activity will close down until the New Year, once again I must point out that we are the icing on the cake, essential services cannot and must not be run by the likes of me and my colleagues.

Lastly I remember the Palestinians in Bethlehem; Christians, Muslims and the few non religious people, hemmed in, suffering from power cuts and water shortages, not much holiday fun for them. They are still occupied by a foreign power, just as they were 2000 years ago. So, no change there.