I know I may be on your naughty list, and I probably deserve it, but maybe you can look to the good I’ve done and give me the only thing I want for Christmas this year. Just one present and I’ll be happy.
Santa, what I want for Christmas is for no one to freeze to death this winter.
You see Santa, I work in a city called Red Deer. I work with beautiful, amazing, kind, interesting, creative and resilient people, and I want this winter to be different. I don’t want any of them to die in the cold.
I know I live in Alberta, and a cold winter and snow are a natural part of every year, and well, I wouldn’t want Christmas to come without a bit of a winter wonderland look. But you see, there’s not always somewhere warm for people to be, and not always a safe place for them to sleep, not enough warm clothes for all of them to wear, and not enough good food to warm their bellies.
Sometimes, for many reasons, they get lost. Sometimes they struggle to get where they need to go. Sometimes they sit down to rest and they don’t get up. Sometimes their fire goes out or it just wasn’t enough.
Santa, I want them all to be safe and warm. It’s cold out tonight, dear Santa, and the weather people say it’ll only get worse.
When I sit, blessed in my comfortable house, and have the warmth and protection of my coat, winter boots, scarf, mitts, tuque and warm, dry socks that I get to put on when I choose to leave my house or my work or wherever I am, I think of the people who may be cold right now, and that my Christmas hope may be in danger of breaking tonight.
Santa, I know I may be on your naughty list, but I don’t want to say goodbye to any more of the people I so cherish because of something so basic, and something you’d think us here in the prosperous and cold country of Canada would be able to prevent by now.
So I’m asking, please Santa, I want no one to freeze to death this winter.
Outreach worker, CAANS/Turning Point