Kind-hearted traders at the Dundas Indoor Market in Middlesbrough are fund-raising again.
In September Sue Denny, one of The Crafty Sisters, had her hair shaved for Macmillan Cancer Support.
Before lockdown a team from Jean’s Kitchen took part in The Great North Run on behalf of the James Cook University Hospital.
Now, on Friday (3 December), traders throughout the market are going to “unleash their inner elf” for the Alzheimer’s Society.
Elf Day started in 2016 to spread some festive cheer and it has raised more than £1.5m to help people affected by dementia, as well as their families, at a particularly difficult time for many of them.
People at work and school – or even at home – are encouraged to transform themselves into a Christmas elf, complete with pointy ears and floppy hat. On Friday there will be donation boxes and raffles taking place throughout the market.
Nicole Bean, who has had her Alta Ego shop at the indoor market for four years, is planning the day on behalf of all the traders. “I’ve known and worked with a couple of people with Alzheimer’s. It’s such a good cause to support,” she said. Nicole organised the market’s Elf Day two years ago but last year’s could not take place because of the pandemic.
“Until recently a lot of charities have not had the opportunity to hold big events like this and that must have had a massive impact on them,” she said.
“I’d signed up for various fund-raising events over the last year or so but everything was cancelled. It would be great to see people supporting us on Elf Day.”
Market manager David Harris said: “I know it’s been a tough couple of years for a lot of people but I know our customers will be as generous as they always are for such a good cause. Please come and join in the fun.”
Linda Haggie, Area Manager for Alzheimer’s Society in Tees Valley, North and East Yorkshire, said: “Elf Day is a great way to get people together to celebrate the festive season, and it’s so easy to take part. You can dress up as much or as little as you like. You could keep it simple in red and green or jingle all the way with pointy ears and curly shoes.
“And if fancy dress isn’t your thing, you might opt instead to bake and sell some treats or organise a festive get-together.
“Regardless of how you choose to get involved, you will be raising vital funds and awareness during what can be a challenging and isolating time for people affected by dementia. We often see an increased demand for our services from families noticing changes in loved ones over the festive period. All the money raised will provide information and support, improve care, fund research, and create lasting change for people affected by dementia.”