The annual Buckinghamshire Christmas gift appeal launches this week, led by the local charity Inspire Bucks.
Now in its eighth year, the appeal is a big drive to give Christmas presents to vulnerable children in Buckinghamshire who otherwise might not receive much – or anything – at Christmas.
Last Christmas more than 2,000 Buckinghamshire children and young people with disadvantaged backgrounds received presents thanks to the generosity of local donors, who pushed funds well over the target of £10,000.
And during the past year funds have allowed birthday gifts to be given to 200 children.
This year Inspire Bucks chairman Paul Irwin says that the impact of rising food prices and energy costs makes it all the more important to ensure children in crisis or need have a happy Christmas.
“Christmas gifts go directly to vulnerable children here in Buckinghamshire, and I’ve seen the wonderful difference this makes to their families,” said Paul. “Thanks to the fantastic generosity last year, Christmas was a time of cheer for these families. I know these times are tough for everyone, but this year I’m asking the people of Buckinghamshire to pull out the stops again and give whatever they’re able.”
The appeal is inviting donations of money online via the charity’s Just Giving fundraising page
People can also purchase a gift from the charity's Amazon wish list.
As in previous years, the Inspire Bucks Christmas gift appeal will work closely with Buckinghamshire Council’s social care teams to ensure gifts get to the right families, and that no one is left out.
Anita Cranmer, Buckinghamshire Council’s Cabinet Member for Education and Children’s Services, said: “The Inspire Bucks Appeal will make a huge difference to the hundreds of children the council works directly with through its social services teams. In addition the appeal will brighten Christmas for the wider group of children whose families have been and still are in difficulty. It’s inspiring to be able to give care and gifts through the enthusiastic and generous work of this charity.”
Paul said gifts of money would ensure suitable presents could be bought for all ages, including children with additional needs and disabilities, older children and young people leaving the Council’s care.
Through its wider work during the past year the charity has helped refugees from Afghanistan and Ukraine, including support for a bike refurbishment scheme for refugees from local volunteers.
In the summer, a sponsored haircut by Inspire Bucks Trustee Clive Wayland swelled funds by more than £1,300.