Reading Family Aid’s Toys and Teens Appeal returns for Christmas 2021. However, due to Covid-19, the charity has made the difficult decision to run the project virtually again, like last year.
Instead of collecting presents, winners of The Queen’s Award, Reading Family Aid, are asking their generous supporters from the local community to donate money on their Go Fund Me appeal rather than gifts. This money will be used to buy new Christmas presents for deprived children in Reading and delivered directly to the organisations that help them.
Each year, we depend not only on the incredible support from the local community, but also on the tireless efforts of our volunteers. Our small army of volunteers work incredibly hard throughout the year, and believe it or not, we start to plan our Toys and Teens Appeals almost as soon as the years presents have been delivered.
One of the mums the charity supports said this: “This has been a strange year…I think I've felt every emotion a human can have. I've enjoyed the time I've managed to spend with my children in lockdown; a time which, even though there was covid which took over the world and killed millions, I tried to create a bubble inside my house, a safe space for my children, somewhere they didn't have to worry…Now it's towards the end of the year, and your mind turns to Xmas. The adverts have started, it's in all the shops. The kids are excited - but you feel sick. Where will I get the money from? How will I afford it? Now after rent and utilities, I have £140 a month to live. How will I make it stretch? How will I feed my family let alone give my three girls the magical Xmas they deserve?”
Maria Simpson has been volunteering for Reading Family Aid for a little over 2 years. When asked what first made her want to join the team, she responded,
“I had recently donated some of my child’s toys, which were no longer played with, at a local drop off point in Reading (pre-pandemic), and wondered what happens next? How do they get to the children that need them most? Envisioning a team of Santa’s helpers, busy at work, delivering presents, I reached out to learn more about how RFA worked. The image of Santa’s helpers was not far from reality, and after learning more about the efforts of the team and the increasing requests for help, I offered to volunteer and help in any way that I could. I’m acutely aware that I am in the fortunate position to not worry about being able to provide my child with Christmas presents, and it was simply heart-breaking to think that other local families are struggling to make Christmas a special time for their children.”
In 2020, the Toys and Teens Appeal delivered gifts to over 1,400 disadvantaged children in time for Christmas. This year, please consider donating to this cause and share the below crowdfunding page on your social media. Anything you can give, no matter how small will make a huge difference to these families at Christmas time. Thank you.
The fundraising page will remain open until 4th December, after which the funds will be used to buy presents that will be sent directly to organisations and distributed to deprived children across Reading. To donate, please visit the Go Fund Me crowdfunding page:
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