Ballymoney’s newly-opened drop-in centre, Open Door, got an unexpected festive surprise when the Mayor Alderman Bill Kennedy presented hampers packed with items for young boys and girls.
The Mayor gave the gifts on behalf of donors, Millside Restaurant, Cloughmills, to, chairperson, Anne Steele, and her colleagues Elizabeth Morrison and Sharon Dobbin, who assured him that they would be distributed to needy families in the Borough.
Mrs Steele described the gifts as wonderful adding: “This is something we didn’t expect and although we have got plenty of surprises since we opened a few weeks ago, these hampers will be very well received,” Mrs. Steele said.
The Mayor said he was delighted to be able to present the hampers on behalf of Millside who had already handed over similar gifts to the Frosses Medical Centre for distribution throughout the village.
The Open Door is located at Lower Main Street (at the entrance to Castlecroft) and is open four days a week to provide social interaction for people from all sections of the community through education cross-community social interaction and craft.
A number of initiatives have been planned for January including a Child Protection course on January 8 from 6.30 p.m. to 9.30 p.m. at a cost of £10. The following Thursday, there will be a knitting class from 7.15 p.m. to 9.15 p.m. and after that a sewing class will commence for five weeks until February 19 with tips being delivered by an expert.
The Centre, which is largely self-funding, has received funding from the Borough Council and the Mayor pledged to do all he could to further help those in charge in the future. They have applied for funding and are currently waiting for their charity registration number.
A community resource, the premises are open to all ages from school children through to the elderly, disabled people, ethnic minorities and lonely or isolated people.
The drop-in centre will also provide signposting to various courses for anyone who is interested by providing leaflets and information.
If anyone can help, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07749476275.”