Salvation Army appealsfor presents to be donated
A church and charity is ensuring some 50-plus children from Berwick and the surrounding area will wake up to presents on Christmas Day.
Berwick Salvation Army is encouraging people to add an extra toy to their shopping list so families struggling to buy a gift for their children can make sure there is a small surprise under their Christmas tree.
Church leader Lieutenant Andrew Manley said: “During the festive season, when many are enjoying celebrations with friends and family, others are struggling to make ends meet.
“Our team of volunteers will be out delivering your generous Christmas gifts to those who might otherwise go without.
“The Christmas Story inspires us as a church to reach out to those in need, so we’re running the Christmas Present Appeal to ensure every child gets a present.”
People are invited to drop a new unused toy for a child aged up to 16 to The Salvation Army in Church Street or Harvestfield furniture project on the Ramparts business park from November 24 to December 11.
The Salvation Army will then distribute these to children and families in the area through its own networks, local groups and social services.
Gifts can include anything from soft and educational toys for the very youngest child, to games, toys and accessories for older children.
Andrew said: “Last year, we delivered more than 100 presents to families in need. It’s wonderful to see children’s faces light up when they open their Christmas presents.
“If you have children or grandchildren, or children you support, think of what they might like in their Christmas stocking and consider buying an extra present and donating it. We’re asking for brand-new toys or gifts so the families we support feel extra special.
“As it’s the Salvation Army’s 151st birthday this year, we’re hoping this year’s present appeal will be our biggest yet.”
All donations are welcome, including items for Christmas food hampers but used products are not appropriate for this appeal.
The Salvation Army is planning three community events to celebrate Christmas: a community carol service with the Baptist church, to be held in the town hall at 6.30pm on Sunday, December 18; a special toddler Nativity service on December 4 at 10.30am at the Salvation Army, Church Street; and carols and mince pies at 11am on December 10 at Harvestfield.
A Salvation Army brass band and its divisional emergency vehicle will be also making an appearance at Berwick’s Dickensian fair on Marygate on December 11.