Carrie Symonds reveals she has spent time speaking with an ‘amazing’ woman in her 70s to keep her company, taking to Instagram to encourage others to reach out this Christmas, despite the covid-19 restrictions.
The fiancé of Prime Minister Boris Johnson shared a photo of herself cradling their seven-month-old son Wilfred at home whilst she enjoyed a call with 78-year old Patsy Pickis, who she met through a voluntary initiative called Together.
Patsy, from Rickmansworth in Hertfordshire, said: ‘It was very touching to get a call from Carrie, she was wonderful to talk to, we just chatted like normal.
‘I know that I am incredibly lucky to have family close by that take care of me and usually keep me company at this time of year, even though I won’t get to see them all this year. But this Christmas I will be thinking about those who might not be as fortunate as myself and it’s nice to know that Carrie is too.’
Ms Symonds, 32, revealed how Patsy had been unable to leave her home ‘much’ during the pandemic but had just become one of the 500,000 to have had the covid-19 vaccine.
Carrie Symonds reveals she has spent time speaking with a woman in her 80s to keep her company, taking to Instagram to encourage others to reach out this Christmas
Ms Symonds, 32, captioned the photo: ‘Earlier today, I spoke with another amazing woman in her 80s, who hasn’t been able to leave her home much this year.’
She captioned the photo: ‘Earlier today, I spoke with another amazing woman in her 80s, who hasn’t been able to leave her home much this year.
‘Despite that, she was in good spirits and having just had the vaccine, was looking forward to returning to her weekly lunch club speaking to her (with Wilf gurgling away on my lap) made my day!’
The mother-of-one described how Wilfred had also attempted to get in on the call, ‘gurgling’ on her lap as she spoke to Patsy.
‘Wilf’, or Wilfred Lawrie Nicholas Johnson in full, appeared to be dressed in a Christmas outfit with a star patterned pair of red leggings paired with a simple cream top. The child’s face is yet to be seen by the public since his birth on April 29 this year.
Acknowledging the strict covid-19 restrictions which have left millions with no option but to forgo their Christmas meal with relatives entirely, Ms Symonds encouraged people to follow her lead by ‘doing something like this’ in their communities to spend ‘#ChristmasTogether’.
She added: ‘Many of us won’t be able to see our loved ones this Christmas, but spending a bit of time doing something like this has got to be what Christmas is all about.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson put his beloved Jack Russell cross, Dilyn, on the front of his Christmas card which he has jointly sent out with his fiancee, Carrie Symonds
Many of Mr Johnson’s predecessors, including Tony Blair and David Cameron, put themselves and their (human) loved ones in the spotlight
‘Please get involved if you can. All the info you need is here and link is also in my bio. https://together.org.uk/ChristmasTogether/’
The link takes you to The Together initiative, a organisation which has teamed up with the NHS, Royal Voluntary Service, and other voluntary organizations, to help reach isolated individuals this Christmas.
The website asks the public to ‘give someone a bell’ and ‘Ring a bell on your doorstep at 6pm on Christmas Eve’.
A statement on the Together website reads: ‘This Christmas will be like no other.
Carrie and Boris together with Wilfred during a Zoom call in July with midwives who helped deliver their son
‘Fears of Covid and government restrictions may mean many of us will be cut off from friends and family, just when we need them the most.
‘A vaccine is coming, and hope is on the horizon, but first we have to get through the darkest and coldest months to come. Many people are feeling vulnerable, lonely or anxious. The Christmas spirit of connection and goodwill has never felt more important than it does right now.
‘So let’s make this Christmas an opportunity to bring people together, rekindle the amazing spirit of looking after each other we all felt when the virus first took hold, and make sure this midwinter is as bright as we can make it.
‘Let’s share Christmas Together.’
Almost half a million people have signed up after Mary Beggs-Reid from Harrogate in North Yorkshire had the idea of ringing bells on their doorsteps at 6pm on Christmas Eve and ‘giving someone a bell’ if they’re likely to be alone.
Ms Beggs-Reid’s idea to ring the bells started out as something that could ‘end 2020 with a bit of magic, hope and togetherness’ in her hometown.
Since then, over 451,000 people have signed up through Facebook to join the 2020WorldwideChristmasEveJingle event.
The new restrictions mean many thousands more people are likely to be spending Christmas on their own.
Ms Beggs-Reid posted on her Facebook page that ‘we have been dealt a blow just before Christmas. For some it will not change anything but for others it will be heart-breaking.’
She said the Christmas Eve ‘jingle’ was more apt than ever: ‘This will be our happy moment. Covid can NOT take this from us so ring louder!! This year the Christmas spirit is so needed and for two minutes we can make sure nobody feels alone.’
Ms Beggs-Reid hopes that, despite their disappointment, her followers will not lose heart.
In response to her message, Kathy Nicholson from Sheffield posted: ‘My elderly Mum has decided she’s going to spend Christmas alone, rather than with any of her six children and their families. I was worried she was letting Christmas pass her by, until I saw this. She’ll be jingling her bells out of the window on Christmas Eve.’