SWIS Christmas party captures festive joy

SWIS PARTY2The joyous chirping of children, and laughs by some parents who for the first time tried eggnog in Canada, could be heard down the festive hallways of Mission Community Services Society’s Second Avenue offices on Dec. 4 before the beginning of the Mission Candlelight Parade.

The event was the annual SWIS (Settlement Worker in Schools) Christmas party for school-aged children and their families who are all new to Canada.

Attended by a happy group of 39 people, the event featured pizza, veggies, ham, cheese, bread, salad and cups of festive eggnog.

“We talked about the history of the Mission Candlelight Parade and introduced families who had not met before,” said Annie Charker, MCSS settlement program coordinator for schools.

“The kids played games, coloured and enjoyed trying on an array of masks, some that looked much like Santa,” said Charker, adding that the SWIS Christmas party this year grew to double in size since last year.

SWIS in Mission has also offered a curling session, and in January a Hemlock Ski Resort tubing outing is planned.  “Watch our MCSS website and Facebook for the date,” said Charker, who was assisted by settlement worker Manpreet Brar.

Charker said it is great “to have families together so they don’t feel alone as newcomers to Canada.”