Christmas Toy Appeal 2019: Making Christmas a happy one for disadvantaged youngsters

Some of the toys collected for last year's appeal. Picture: Ken Mears

Some of the toys collected for last year's appeal. Picture: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant

The nights are getting longer, the days colder and festive adverts are appearing on TV - yes, it’s that time of year once again.

But for many families across Newham, Christmas isn't a fun or happy time of year - with disadvantaged, vulnerable and at-risk children facing waking up on December 25 to a day of hardship and struggle just like any other.

That's where the Christmas Toy Appeal - now in its 42nd year - comes in.

This year's appeal, run by the Newham Recorder and Community Links and facilitated by Ambition, Aspire, Achieve (AAA), aims to collect 18,000 gifts to ensure that every child referred to the appeal has gifts to open and a smile on their face on Christmas morning.

There are plenty of ways you can get involved.

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On Saturday, December 14 a bucket collection is set to take place at Clapton CFC's match against Indian Gymkhana Club.

Last year, the club - which plays at the Stray Dog Ground in Walthamstow - managed to raise £600 for the appeal, which were used to buy toys for children to open on Christmas Day - and the money raised this year will be put to the same good use.

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The following day, Sunday, December 15, youngsters from Deborah Day Theatre School are set to put on their annual Christmas show in support of the Toy Appeal.

Tickets for the performance, due to take place from 2pm at East Ham Town Hall, cost £10 with the money going towards the appeal. These can be bought directly from Kevin Jenkins by emailing

The youngest children the appeal helps are just two months old, and the oldest are aged 16 - so toys suitable for all ages are required.

These can be dropped off at any of the donation points, and are encouraged to have both a play and educational value for the young recipients.

If you're organising an event or large collection in support of the Toy Appeal, we'd love to hear about it and feature it in the Recorder.

Please email or call 020 8477 3834.

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