Chiswick celebrities design Christmas decorations for charity

Dame Helen Mirren and Phil Collins get creative for a good cause

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For more information about the decoration auction phone the Festive Phoenix hotline on 020 7234 9761

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National addiction charity, Phoenix House, has commissioned some of the UK’s top celebrities to design a unique ‘bird-in-flight’ decoration to brighten up your Christmas tree.

Chiswick-born celebrities Dame Helen Mirren and Phil Collins have been flexing their creative muscles by decorating individual Christmas tree hangings to raise money for substance misuse charity Phoenix House.

The Festive Phoenix campaign has celebrated illustrator Quentin Blake as its patron, who says he was happy to get involved “I am delighted to be patron of the Festive Phoenix campaign to support the work of Phoenix House and to celebrate its special Anniversary year. Over the last 35 years Phoenix House has positively touched the lives of thousands of substance misusers and their families all over the UK. Through its family and adult rehabilitation centres, work in prisons and community centres many people are now living useful, enjoyable lives free from addiction. Here’s to the next 35 years of Phoenix House.”

Each celebrity was assigned the task of creating an original, festive tree hanging, with a blank Phoenix decoration and a selection of decorative pens to get them started. The response has been overwhelming, including a Baldrick design from Tony Robinson, Robbie Coltrane’s intricate feather patterning and Dame Helen Mirren’s colourful contribution. All designs will be auctioned from 5th December to 12th December 2005.

Phoenix House works with over 9000 substance misusers in the UK each year, helping them to rebuild their lives, by finding a sustainable route out of addiction. Phoenix House service users are encouraged to further their education, develop new skills, abilities and hobbies and access employment opportunities, whilst on one of the Phoenix House residential, community, or prison based treatment programmes.

Jeanette, a single parent who underwent treatment at Phoenix House, says the Phoenix House programme made her re-think her life “I don’t think many people in my situation realise there are places like this which not only get you off drugs but make you realise that you can change your life. It’s helped to teach me that I didn’t have a drugs problem but that I had lots of problems, which led me to drugs. Phoenix House has helped me to transform – turning my life around 100 percent.”

November 17, 2005