Brothers and sisters who are separated get the chance to celebrate Christmas together thanks to STAR, Siblings Reunited.

Throughout December the Fife-based charity, throws open its doors for an almost daily festive celebration for brothers and sisters.

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are packed into their two hour visit giving them a chance to make lasting memories of their time together.

They arrive wearing their Christmas jumpers and the first part is set out like the build up to Christmas where they make cards and tree decorations. From arrival, photos are being taken and then printed off into a card that everyone can take away from the day.

They then move on to gingerbread men baking or decorating for the younger ones and then get to open the chocolate advent calendar.

Over hot chocolate with cream and marshmallows one of the older children then reads the Night Before Christmas.

Then it is Christmas Day and the celebrations really begin! There’s a present for everyone under the tree and they enjoy a traditional Christmas dinner with all the trimmings.

Then they head to the BBQ pit where they snuggle up on the bean bags and watch their favourite festive film.

Karen Morrison from STAR, Siblings Reunited explained: “It is all about making memories. It’s the simple things like watching a movie together or pulling crackers over the table. Some of the things that we take for granted.

“We have some groups where this is their third Christmas celebration here. We try to make it as special as possible for everyone who comes here. They go away happy, but shattered too!”

COVID-19 has impacted on Christmas for some of the groups as several are self-isolating or their carers have health conditions and there is the issue of travelling from different tiers.

Karen said: “It is a shame that some brothers and sisters will miss out on their visit here. It has been a tough year, but we look forward to welcoming them back in the new year.”

So what does Christmas hold for Karen? She said: “I’ve got all the family here, so it won’t be restful, but we are lucky to all be together.”


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