It has been another successful year for the Toys and Teens Appeal! On Sunday 2nd December we began to clear the anonymous church hall in Reading ready for a busy week ahead of collecting all the toys which have been donated over the last few months.
After a difficult 2022 for Reading Family Aid's Toys and Teens, this year reminded the community how important the appeal is to children living in Reading. 668 sacks were filled to go to 2480 children throughout Reading and surrounding areas.
This is thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, the many, many individuals from Reading (and beyond), clubs, societies, places of worship and businesses. Because of so many people's kind donations and funding we provided each child with at least four presents each.
As well as donations of presents, many individuals contributed money to our GoFundMe page. Currently we have received over £3000 in donations, which our RFA volunteers used to shop for toys or gifts, particularly for the older age groups who are less likely to be bought presents, which ensures each child has a few toys or gifts to open on Christmas Day. If you haven't got round to donating yet there is still time - our GoFundMe is open for donations until Dec 24th - please follow the link here.
Just to mention a few organisations:
Reading Golf Club who organised a huge collection from their members and the Junior Captain, Alex, organised a collection amongst themselves. Alex 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‘“.
and some of the schools and churches who organised their own collections ....
Thank you! Without the kindness and generosity of collections, donations and volunteering from individuals, businesses, churches, schools and community groups, to numerous to mention, the Appeal wouldn't have been half as successful as it was.
We must also thank all the organisations who donated tables for us to use throughout the week: St Barnabas Church Hall in Emmer Green, Our Lady and St. Anne's Church in Caversham, Caversham Hall and 89th Scout Group.
As well as the amazing Church Hall where we do all the work each year (you know who you are!), and donate the use of the hall for the whole week. Thank you!
Checking, sorting and packing the toys and gifts would not be possible without all of our amazing volunteers, many of whom turn up year after year to help. Thank you to all of you!
A huge thank you also goes to all the van drivers who collected and returned the tables, collected all the donations from the donation points, and the companies, school and places of worship who had in-house collections. They also delivered the 668 packed sacks to 95 requesting organisations, travelling all over the Reading area.
So the Toys and Teens Appeal comes to an end for another year.
It was another successful year, putting more smiles on children's faces across Reading.
Thanks to everyone's help - see you in 2024!
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