To help children across the city, Southampton City Council has teamed up with a host of businesses, charities and community organisations for its annual festive toy appeal.
Kind-hearted members of the public are being asked to donate new toys suitable for children up to the age of 18 and help ensure that young people who are supported by Southampton City Council’s children’s services have a special gift to open this festive season – whatever their circumstances.
Last year local people donated more than 7,000 toys and the organisers of this year’s appeal are hoping that this year’s total matches or even exceeds this number, making it a Christmas to remember for children in need in the city.
New toys can be donated by members of the public at Westquay’s customer services desk from today until Friday 20 December. Staff from other organisations that are supporting the appeal will also be adding to the haul of toys, which will be collected and distributed to children aged up to 18 in Southampton who might not expect presents this Christmas.
A large number of businesses, charities and other organisations across the city are coming together as part of the appeal to help make it a Christmas to remember for the city’s children, including Westquay, Saints Foundation and many, many more.
Councillor Darren Paffey, Cabinet Member for Aspiration, Children and Lifelong Learning, said:
“We’re really pleased to be launching this year’s appeal. People in or visiting Southampton have shown themselves to be no strangers to acting in the true spirit of the season and have generously supported this appeal over many years. With the help of our brilliant partner organisations, we’re hopeful that this can be the biggest and best appeal year yet and put smiles on the faces of the city’s children, whatever their circumstances.”
Andy Collyer, General Manager of Westquay said:
“Christmas presents the perfect opportunity to make sure the less fortunate children of Southampton don't miss out on the happiest time of year, and we’re delighted to be a part of this fantastic appeal.
"We encourage our guests to donate generously so we can help to bring happiness to thousands of families this festive season.”
Pictured at the appeal launch: Cllr Darren Paffey, Cabinet Member for Aspiration, Children and Lifelong Learning (left), and Colin McPherson from Southampton City Council's Children's Services