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Festive cheer served up at Brangwyn Hall for people in need

Swansea came together to spread festive cheer to people in need at a special Christmas event.

TogetherAtXmas18

Organised by JR Events and Catering, with support from Swansea Council, the Together at Christmas event in the Brangwyn Hall today (Wednesday 19 December) included a free, two-course Christmas dinner for people in Swansea who are vulnerable, feel isolated or may be homeless.

The three-hour lunchtime event also featured a Christmas party experience, including a festive tree, crackers, live music and singers.

Free services at the event, courtesy of local businesses, included a hairdresser and information points on housing support. Information about employment schemes and welfare and benefits advice were available.

Swansea Council organised free transport to and from the event, with a staffed area set up outside the Brangwyn Hall for people's dogs to enjoy festive treats.

The council's trading standards team donated de-branded counterfeit shoes and clothing that had been confiscated as part of recent operations.

Jessica Rice, director of JR Events and Catering, said: "We pulled out all the stops to make sure this year's event was even better than last year's.

"Everyone deserves some happiness at Christmas, so we wanted the event to give festive cheer to as many people as possible in Swansea who need our support.

"Kindly supported by the council and many businesses, charities and other organisations across the city, Together at Christmas gave local people the chance to volunteer their time on the day."

Cllr Andrea Lewis, the council's cabinet member for homes and energy, said: "Tackling homelessness remains a top priority for us as a local authority. A huge amount of work is done to prevent people from becoming homeless in our communities.  

"Our recently-introduced homelessness strategy and the actions which go with it will help us to go the extra mile to support families, single parent families, rough sleepers, those with complex needs and others who are at risk of becoming homeless or are already homeless.

"We're delighted to have worked in such close partnership with JR Events and Catering once again for what is now an annual event. This builds on the work of the council in preventing homelessness and giving support to others in need."

Cllr Mary Sherwood, cabinet member for better communities said: "Supporting residents facing poverty is a key priority for the council.   During Together at Christmas, council staff gave people guidance on welfare benefits, making sure that those who are entitled to help are claiming all that is available to them."

"We also have employability schemes that can help long-term unemployed people back into the workplace, as well as help those facing redundancy or stuck in low-paid employment to find alternatives.

"Our staff are helped raise awareness of the event across the city to ensure as many people as possible benefited."

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