Christmas card joy for Stirling care home residents as Thistles delivers personalised cards from local primary schools

– Thistles shopping centre in Stirling arranged Christmas cards for every resident at Abbeyfield House after partnering with Riverside Primary School and Our Lady’s RC Primary School under its #ThistlesHelps campaign –

20th December 2021

Residents of Abbeyfield House in Stirling received a surprise delivery from Thistles shopping centre in the form of handmade, personalised Christmas cards from the children of Riverside Primary School and Our Lady’s RC Primary School under the shopping centre’s #ThistlesHelps initiative.

After launching earlier this year with the aim of helping the community in its recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic, the latest #ThistlesHelps campaign aims to spark some joy with the elderly residents of Stirling with the help of local primary schools.

A total of 37 pupils at Riverside Primary School and Our Lady’s RC Primary School created a card for every resident of Abbeyfield House care home, at a time of year which can be lonely for many people. Arranged by the team at Thistles, the cards were then hand delivered to the care home, in-line with all current Covid-19 guidelines, with the hope of raising spirits and delivering some festive joy.

Gary Turnbull, Centre Director at Thistles, commented: “After the strange Christmas experienced across the country last year as a result of the Covid-19 restrictions, we wanted to do something special for our local community and inject some much needed happiness and cheer this year. With limits on social events and visits over the past year particularly impacting residents of care homes we chose to partner with local schools to give children across Stirling the opportunity to put a smile on the face of every resident in Abbeyfield House.

“From the moment we contacted Riverside and Our Lady’s RC schools, both were incredibly enthusiastic about the initiative and we want to thank both the schools and each and every pupil who created the fantastic handmade cards. I’m sure their hard work will be worth it when it brings a smile to the recipients.”

Jennifer Toft, Headteacher, Our Lady’s RC Primary School, said: “We are delighted to be involved in this heart-warming project. Children from Our Lady’s have thoroughly enjoyed demonstrating their artistic talents whilst spreading some much needed festive cheer during Advent.”

Abbeyfield House, like all care homes throughout the country, was plunged into lockdown for much of the pandemic, leaving residents isolated from friends and family. While restrictions have eased, care homes continue to exercise caution which means contact is still limited.

Vikki Ferguson, Manager, Abbeyfield House, said: “This is a lovely initiative by Thistles and the local schools and I know that the Residents that live here will really appreciate these cards and all the time and effort that has gone into making them.  We will be arranging an afternoon reading the cards with the residents so they can all enjoy the effort that has gone in by so many pupils. The cards will really cheer up our lounge and will have pride of place for all family members to enjoy. I would like to thank the children of Our Lady’s RC Primary School and Riverside Primary School who may be unaware of how happy this gesture will make older people at this time of year, especially when they may be on their own and missing family.”

Laura Quintin, Deputy Head Teacher, Riverside Primary School, added: “Our Primary 5 pupils at Riverside were absolutely delighted to take part in this project. They are hoping that their cards will make the residents at Abbeyfield House smile this Christmas.”

For more information on Thistles and #ThistlesHelps please visit