Christmas Toy Appeal 2019: How your gifts help vulnerable children

Volunteers sort through donations at the Toy Appeal warehouse. Picture: Ken Mears

Volunteers sort through donations at the Toy Appeal warehouse. Picture: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant

“I can feel like a real mum now and on Christmas Day my children will feel like real children.”

The words of one young mother sum up the impact the Christmas Toy Appeal can have on families across Newham.

Her family was among hundreds to receive a bag of gifts last year thanks to the generosity of Recorder readers, as well as schools, businesses and community groups across the borough.

And this year is no different as we seek to help more than 2,000 underprivileged children by providing them with presents to open on Christmas morning.

Having gifts in a stocking or around the Christmas tree is something many of us take for granted, but the reality for hundreds of families across the borough is that it would not be possible without the support of the Toy Appeal.

Each year, the appeal - run in partnership with Community Links and facilitated by Ambition, Aspire, Achieve - receives referrals from a variety of family support and welfare agencies.

It allows the appeal to support the most disadvantaged, vulnerable and at-risk children, including those who may not be being helped by anyone else.

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Toy Appeal co-founder Kevin Jenkins explained: "All the children helped will be experiencing the ravages of poverty on a daily basis, compounded by multiple problems and issues.

"Without the help of the appeal they really would be waking up on Christmas morning to an empty stocking and another day the same as any other."

He added: "This year we have experienced an unprecedented level of real genuine need and we are being asked to help more children than ever before."

Each child will be given a stocking full of new gifts tailored to their age, needs and abilities to open on Christmas morning.

But we can only do it with your help.

Donations of books, toys and gift vouchers can be made at any of the drop-off points across Newham. For larger donations that require collecting, contact to arrange.

And don't forget to let us know what you're doing to support the Toy Appeal - email or call 020 8477 3834.

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