How I’m spending Christmas this year (Tom’s story)

This Christmas will be a little different. This Christmas, it’s not my turn to look after my young daughter, who will be away with her Mum. I know she’ll have a great time, but I also know that I will feel sad and a little lonely over the holiday season. The worst kind of lonely, the kind of lonely you feel even when in good company.

To be honest, I have been a little fearful about this year’s Christmas for the two years since she was last away at this time. Maybe others will relate to that. But I’m hoping I may have found, if not quite an antidote, then at least a very good way to fill the void.

An amazing person once opened my eyes to the chronic levels of homeless we experience in the UK. I still struggle to understand how the sixth largest economy in the world cannot eradicate a problem alien to many poorer economies.

But this isn’t a blog about politics. I was a soldier once and it saddens me that a significant percentage of those sleeping rough have also served their country. Whilst no one deserves to be without a home, I have a special bond with those who have so selflessly put themselves in harm’s way to protect all our freedoms. It’s personal for me.

So this year, I have decided to spend a few days helping give London’s homeless a better Christmas. Whilst I can’t be the father I’d like to be at this special time, I hope I can help – in a very small way – make some of our community’s most vulnerable have the safe and fun filled Christmas we would wish for all our children.

Tom, 42, London (England)

Part of a series of stories about Christmas shared by followers of our Facebook page We’re so grateful to everyone who took the time to contribute.

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