01962 862050  admin@wcns.org.uk

Christmas tree with Ali and guests

Christmas at the Nightshelter

Like every other home at Christmas time, we try and make the Nightshelter a warm, safe and joyful place to be. Residents may not be able to spend the festive season with their own families, but they’ll be surrounded by an extended family of staff, volunteers and fellow residents, who will together make Christmas at the Nightshelter a cheery affair complete with decorations, tree, a traditional Christmas roast dinner and, of course, present-giving. 


What to give

Every one of the Nightshelter’s residents will receive a bundle of gifts, mostly donated by local individuals and organisations. Each year we ask for donations that will help make life a little easier for those experiencing homelessness, and prepare them for independent living. The thought and generosity that goes into these gift donations is always so touching, and we are extremely grateful to everyone who thinks of us. Popular items are: 

- Diaries, notepads, wallets and low-value watches 

- Vouchers for coffee shops or the cinema (small denominations rather than a single large donation allow us to share gifts in an equitable way)

- Personal items such as small lightweight rucksacks or daybagslightweight waterproof jackets and men’s trainers (sizes 10 and 11 are the most commonly needed)

If you would like to donate something that is not on the list, please call our office first on 01962 862050 or email admin@wcns.org.uk to check with the Nightshelter staff. 


How and when to give

There's no need to wrap presents before bringing them to the Nightshelter (we have some lovely volunteers who come in and act as elves!). However, if you would like to wrap your gifts/gift boxes it would be really helpful if you could put a label on the outside saying what it is and whether suitable for a man or a woman. 

We’d be really grateful if any present donations could be dropped at the Nightshelter by no later than Monday 19th December, so that our elves (volunteers) can work their magic. Thank you.  


Other ways to support the Nightshelter at Christmas  

Visit our stall at Winchester Christmas Market

Don’t forget to stop by our stall at Winchester Cathedral’s Christmas market on Saturday 25th November, where we’ll be selling Christmas cards, decorations and, for the first time, birdhouses, courtesy of the Nightshelter’s Birdhouse Project (more details to follow shortly). 


Buy our Christmas cards

You can also buy Christmas cards designed especially for the Nightshelter by local artist Paul Treasure, at the Christmas market or directly from the Nightshelter office (open every weekday from 8am-3pm). 


Volunteer for us

The Nightshelter has volunteer vacancies all year round: unfortunately we aren't able to offer volunteer roles for Christmas time only. If you are interested in volunteering for us during the festive season and beyond, please see the Volunteer section of our website. 


Sponsor a bed

It costs just £2 to sponsor a bed at the Nightshelter. Text WCNS17 followed by £2 to 70070 and help us give our residents a safe and warm Christmas. 


Thank you as always for your support in helping make Christmas special for some of the most vulnerable people in our community. With best wishes for Christmas and the New Year - the Nightshelter team.