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ACVO News November 2023

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Oct 27, 2022

Help us bring wonder to children this Christmas, asks local children’s charity

A north-east charity is asking for support as it starts to prepare for its biggest ever annual Christmas campaign – ‘No Child Should Go Without Believing in Magic’, gifting Christmas Eve boxes for children and families in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.

AberNecessities, which provides basic essentials to families experiencing extreme financial hardship in the north-east, is planning to deliver over 2500 Christmas Eve gift boxes to local families who would not otherwise be able to celebrate Christmas, as well as gifts for Christmas Day. Since its inception in 2019, AberNecessities has supported over 8000 local children, giving much-needed support to families in Aberdeen city and shire.

The charity is asking local businesses and the wider community to sponsor the gift boxes, helping to fund the assembly, gifts and direct delivery in the lead up to Christmas. The Christmas Eve boxes, aimed at bringing some magic to Christmas for families include cosy pyjamas and socks, festive treats, Christmas activities and a storybook – as well as a treat for Rudolph.

Carefully curated, age-related, thoughtful gifts will also be delivered for each child in the family, making Christmas Day feel extra special.  

“Christmas is such a special time, and we want every child to feel the wonder of the festive season.”

AberNecessities founder Danielle Flecher-Herd commented: “Every child dreams of Christmas, but for one in five children in our community, that dream will just not come true. Christmas is such a special time, and we want every child to feel the wonder of the festive season.  Our team is working hard to make sure as many children as possible enjoy the magic of the festivities and wake up to gifts this Christmas morning.

“This year’s Christmas operation is huge. It is just heart-wrenching that so many families in our community cannot afford to bring the magic of Christmas into their homes. Because of the shocking cost-of-living crisis and the continued effects of Covid, the number of requests we receive just grows and grows, and this year we are preparing to lovingly create almost twice as many bespoke Christmas Eve boxes and Christmas gifts as last year. The Christmas Eve boxes will bring a smile to so many children’s faces, as well as the faces of their parents, helping them enjoy the wonder of the season. Every parent wants to create magical memories for their little ones – and together, we can help them do that. We know from previous years that the boxes are really well received and help give the whole family something to celebrate, during what will be a very, very difficult winter for many.”

Applications for support from Abernecessities comes from healthcare professionals including health visitors and social workers.

Michelle Herd, co-founder of Abernecessities

Co-founder Michelle Herd added: “We are acutely aware that everyone is affected by the cost-of-living crisis, and as a result we are asking our ever-generous community to give what they can. As well as financial donations to sponsor the Christmas Eve boxes, we will have baubles on the Giving Tree at Union Square over the festive season so that people can purchase just one or a selection of small Christmas gifts for local children. Every single donation will make a child and parent smile – that’s something you really can’t put a price on. We know people really want to help, and we are keen to offer the opportunity for everyone to support us in whatever way they can.”

Donations to sponsor Christmas Eve gift boxes for local children can be made at Michelle said every penny is welcome. “We hope that individuals, business owners, managers and colleagues will get together to support the campaign. Christmas can be a magical time, but it can also be a very difficult time for parents who are struggling to provide a Christmas tree or gifts because they have to prioritise feeding their children or heating their homes.”

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