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Home NATIONAL1,200 attend Xmas charity party in Helsinki
Fri, 25 Dec, 2015 01:34:18 AM
Nice Christmas weather foretells a good year: President
FTimes- STT Report, Dec 25

More than 1,200 people on Thursday attended the traditional Christmas party for the marginalised, needy and homeless people organised by Heikki Hursti at the Helsinki Expo and Convention (Messukeskus).

President Sauli Niinistö also took part in the programme and thanked the organisers for holding such a celebration programme to help the common people.

“Is not it an old Finnish wisdom that if the sun shines on Christmas Eve, next year will be happier,” pointed out the president.

The organisers were worried whether the guests would be able to find the new venue, as this year they shifted it to Pasila sensing the previous venue of the Töölö Sports Hall inadequate to accommodate a large number of guests.

But more than 1,200 people attended the programme and a queue of hundreds was seen in front of the venue from the morning.

Many of the guests who arrived for the event had decades of working history which was cut short by reorganisation or serious illness.

The state of disability pension and unemployment benefit combined with exorbitant rental rates in Helsinki has led to a situation where there was no bread left on the table. Many felt that they had been left alone with their problems. Attempts to get help were thwarted by cold bureaucracy of agencies.

The visitors were entertained by, among other things, CatCat and Paula Koivuniemi Christmas songs during the coffee and meal breaks.
At the end, everyone was offered a food bag to take home.

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