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Carnoustie family spreads joy by offering Christmas dinner to a stranger

The Mackenzie family who will welcome an elderly stranger to their dinner table on Christmas day.
The Mackenzie family who will welcome an elderly stranger to their dinner table on Christmas day.

A Carnoustie family is spreading the true meaning of Christmas by opening up their home to an elderly stranger facing the festive season on their own.

Farrah Mackenzie and her husband Graham will set an extra place at the dinner table and are inviting an elderly resident to join them and their family for a traditional three course meal on Christmas day.

Farrah, 41, an additional support needs teacher at Grange Primary School in Monifieth, explained they have a space this year as her grandad is visiting his son in Perth.

They have invited a resident to join them on Christmas day to re-pay the local community which has supported them over the last two years.

The family has been overwhelmed with the generosity they experienced from the public when they appealed for help in finding a special toy on Christmas Eve for their eldest son, Cameron.

Farrah said: “We’ve been incredibly fortunate the last two Christmases as total strangers helped us find two very rare Christmas presents for Cameron, who is severely autistic and mainly non-verbal.

“Through the power of social media we managed to source him a vintage ‘Bob the builder’ hat in 2016 on Christmas Eve, and in 2017 we managed to source a ‘Bob the builder’ tool bench, again on Christmas Eve.

“So two kind strangers made our little boy’s Christmas wishes come true, so this year we wanted to give something back.

“I wanted to show our kids the most important gift at Christmas is love and caring, not toys.

“Doing one simple act of kindness, like sharing a meal, could make a real difference to that person.

“It would give them something to look forward to and something to remember.”

The special guest will join Farrah, Graham, who works at Michelin, and their children Cameron, 10 and eight-year-old twins Craig and Freya for Christmas dinner.

The Mackenzies have contacted Lorraine Young, chairman for the Golf Memories and Football Action group in Carnoustie, to try to find someone suitable.

Lorraine also has links with Carnoustie Befrienders for Older People and is secretary of Carnoustie Rotary. Club.

Farrah continued: “The person will join our family for a three course meal, including turkey with all the trimmings.

“Transport will be provided and we would invite them round for tea and cake before Christmas day so they don’t feel so nervous on Christmas itself.

“They will be warmly welcomed into our home, and can share the Christmas cheer with our two grannies, one grandad, one uncle, our three kids and me and my husband.”

She also hopes their kind gesture is copied by others and has been heartened by all the messages of support she has already received.

“If you have a space at your table then I think more people should be doing this, it is what Christmas is all about,” Farrah said.

“Another lady who read my post has offered space at her table too if I was inundated with offers, which was amazing.

“Wouldn’t it be awesome if people respond and more people offer a space at their table for Christmas?”

Anyone interested in joining the family on Christmas day can contact the Courier’s Angus team on 01382 575891 with their name and contact details and we will pass them on to the Mackenzies.

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