‘Needed more than ever before’: Why you should support our annual Christmas Toy Appeal

PUBLISHED: 08:00 18 November 2020

Kevin Jenkins is encouraging people to support the Christmas Toy Appeal in a challenging year. Picture: Kevin Jenkins

Kevin Jenkins is encouraging people to support the Christmas Toy Appeal in a challenging year. Picture: Kevin Jenkins

Kevin Jenkins

This has been such a difficult and challenging year for everyone but sadly, all available evidence confirms that it is the children and their families who were already the most in need, who have suffered more than everyone else – experiencing deepening difficulties and cascading challenges.

Furthermore the pandemic’s relentless grip on our communities and the resulting loss of life, as well as increasing unemployment and deteriorating mental health it is causing for families who were already struggling but getting by, is resulting in many of these families, through no fault of their own, being pushed back into need, desperately requiring help and support.

As a result, the annual Christmas Toy Appeal - the 43rd - is needed more than ever before, and we are already receiving more requests for help this year than in any of the appeals previous 42 years.

Each child helped will be experiencing the ravages of poverty each and every day, compounded by their own bespoke combination of multiple difficulties and challenges, such as poor and/or temporary accommodation, food hunger, poor wellbeing, emotional needs, educational underachievement, behavioural difficulties, disability and/or additional needs, being a victim of personal abuse or violence, or bereavement.

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At Christmas, each family helped does not receive any extra money to help them provide the gifts and seasonal foods that so many of us are lucky enough to take for granted; instead they are expected to stretch their already inadequate income even further and it is just not possible.

So once again we will be aiming to provide a Christmas stocking of new gifts specific to each child’s age, needs, abilities and wherever possible, their most wished for gift to open on Christmas morning, so that they can experience a real Christmas day rather than just another day the same as every other.

The full children’s stockings will also give each benefiting family renewed resilience and determination knowing that their their community cares about them, to continue to work towards overcoming their difficulties and challenges and move forward to a time when they can support the appeal themselves – as many of the previous beneficiaries of the appeal now do each year.

If you are in a position where you can help, please consider helping your local appeal in this the most difficult and challenging year for us all.

Together we can make a real difference for Newham’s most disadvantaged, vulnerable and at risk children this Christmas.

Please be part of that difference – thank you.

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