On the 30th October RFA's Chair, Wendy Howell, was invited to a meeting of the Thames Valley Flower Club where she was presented with a cheque for £600 by their Chair, Leslie.
Wendy talked about our work and thanked them very much for their support.
They have also been collecting toys for the Toys and Teens Appeal.
Huge thanks to Thames Valley Flower Club!
Last week during half term, Reading Golf Club juniors organised a competition with some of the Seniors and donated toys to our appeal.
Alex Stronach (2nd from the right in the back row), the Junior Captain said “The Juniors heard about Reading Family Aid when it became the Club charity at Reading Golf Club earlier this year and I thought we could help raise awareness of the situation of young people who will not be as lucky as us this Christmas by holding a Junior Competition at The Caversham. Fourteen juniors took part along with senior members and we were all happy to be able to help the Toys Appeal with our donations".
Thanks a lot Alex!
COULD YOU TELL YOUR CHILD THEY WON’T BE GETTING ANY PRESENTS THIS CHRISTMAS?
Reading Family Aid’s Toys & Teens appeal is back for another year, sponsored by The Chronicle. This year the appeal is accepting new and nearly new toys at 33 donation points across Reading and the surrounding areas. These toys and gifts will be distributed to disadvantaged children in Reading and the surrounding area, ready to be opened on Christmas day.
Imagine you had to tell your children that they won’t be getting a toy from Santa this year. This will be the incredibly sad situation that many families find themselves in this Christmas without your help. More families than ever are being plunged into poverty with the cost-of-living crisis having far-reaching consequences.
As we all know times are tougher than in previous years and none more so for those already struggling to make ends meet. To put things into context, last year Reading Family Aid gave Christmas presents to a record number of 3,001 disadvantaged children. Although this might sound positive it was a sad reminder that the reason this number is higher than in the previous year of 2,558 is that more and more families are living in poverty. Sadly this number is expected to rise again this year.
If proof were needed then we only have to find evidence for just how many families are living in poverty. The number of children aged between 0-15 years now living in low-income families in Reading, is 10,568*. That means over 1 in 4 children are living in poverty in Reading. In a typical school class of 30 children, on average 7 of them will be living in poverty.
This becomes particularly apparent at Christmas time when all they wish for are presents from Santa. Reading Family Aid volunteer Charlie McLean said "I have two young boys and I can't imagine their faces if I told them Father Christmas hadn't come this year. As a parent it's so incredibly sad to think of children that won't receive even a single present on Christmas day. For them to wonder what they did wrong, and why they don't deserve a visit from Santa. That's why I help with, and donate to, the Toys and Teens Appeal every year. In the hope that I can bring even a small amount of happiness to their lives this Christmas".
One of the teachers of school pupils supported by last year's appeal said "I just wanted to say a massive massive thank you for the children's gifts. Two of the boys told me that they were both really happy at home because mum got gifts for them. (your gifts) ‘Child 1’ said "I got a book, and a marble game"; Child 2 said "I got a magic book, a brain puzzle game and a football". They were both delighted and said it was "one of the best days ever". As a result of the conversation we realised the children actually have no toys at all at home. Thank you for your help".
The Toys and Teens Appeal 2023 will be collecting donated new and nearly new toys from donation drop off points, as well as using funds from the Go Fund Me online to buy gifts for children to open on Christmas day.
To support the campaign you can donate a gift to the drop off points - more details on what can be donated here.
If you cannot donate a gift the campaign also has an online GoFundMe page to help buy new presents for age groups that receive less donations each year.
* . (www.gov.uk/government/collections/children-in-low-income-families-local-area-statistics)
The Mayor of Reading, Cllr. Tony Page, has leant his support to the Christmas Toys Appeal.
Reading Family Aid’s Toys & Teens appeal is back for another year, sponsored by The Chronicle. This year the appeal is accepting new and nearly new toys at 28 donation points across Reading and the surrounding areas. These toys and gifts will be distributed to disadvantaged children in Reading and the surrounding area, ready to be opened on Christmas day.
Today the Mayor of Reading launched the appeal and said: “We have many families and children in the borough facing very tough times. Families are living in over crowded, damp conditions. The need for support at Christmas is acute and that’s why the Toys and Teens Appeal is so important. I would urge people to consider the scenario where you are forced to say to your child that they are not going to get any presents this year. There’s a real danger within the borough that thousands of children will go without any presents at Christmas without your support”.
A mum of three, who receives donations from the charity, explains why this appeal means so much to her; “I was married with three little girls but now my husband is in prison for attacking us. So for several years I have been a single mum with three girls, now all over 10. Even though this year I have a part time job things are still hard. The more I work, the less benefits I get and so the more my bills go up. For example my council tax - I lose benefits because I am working so I have to pay more of it. I have to pay travel expenses to get to work. And food is so expensive I can barely afford to feed and clothe us all never mind pay for any extras like my daughters wanting to go to the cinema and out with friends.
I dread Christmas with all the pressure of what children want and what other children get. Reading Family Aid has helped me for a several years with presents for my girls. Without their help I would really struggle at Christmas. Any extra help I can get really makes a massive difference. Please donate to the Toys and Teens Appeal so that families like mine can have a nice Christmas and remove some of the stress of it all. Thank you”.
Each Christmas, the Toys and Teens Appeal helps ensure that children who would not otherwise receive a single present, have something to open on Christmas morning. Last year, over 3,000 children received a gift at Christmas, through the generous donations of supporters.
To support the campaign you can donate a gift to any of the drop off points, and more details on what can be donated can be found here.
Or you could organise a gift collection at work or school. Please find all the information here.
If you cannot donate a physical gift, the appeal also has an online GoFundMe page to help buy new presents for age groups that receive less donations each year.
Anything you give will make a child so happy this Christmas. Thank you.
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