Christmas Family Appeal launched

Pictured at the launch of the 2018 Christmas Family Appeal and Translink and U105's 'Stuff a Bus' initiative are (from left):  Ian Campbell, Acting Director of Service Operations at Translink; Major Paul Kingscott, Divisional Leader of the Salvation Army; Archie Kinney, Regional Vice President of St Vincent de Paul and Denise Watson of U105.
Pictured at the launch of the 2018 Christmas Family Appeal and Translink and U105's 'Stuff a Bus' initiative are (from left): Ian Campbell, Acting Director of Service Operations at Translink; Major Paul Kingscott, Divisional Leader of the Salvation Army; Archie Kinney, Regional Vice President of St Vincent de Paul and Denise Watson of U105.

Foyle Street Bus Station is just one of the many locations across the North where people can donate gifts to The Salvation Army and St Vincent de Paul’s (SVP) annual Christmas Family Appeal, which is running until December 18.

The campaign, which is aimed at ensuring all disadvantaged children in the North have a present to open this Christmas, is supported by Translink and U105 through their ‘Stuff A Bus’ initiative, in which they are aiming to fill a double decker with 15,000 gifts for underprivileged children.

The ‘Stuff A Bus’ appeal is back for its second year, and the organisations are calling on people’s support to stuff a double decker with 15,000 toys and gifts.

Speaking at the launch, Archie Kinney, Regional Vice President for St Vincent de Paul, said: “The effects of poverty don’t stop just because it’s Christmas, they endure throughout the year.

“This Appeal means so much to the families and groups who receive our donations of gifts as they are seeing smiles on little ones faces on Christmas Day rather than tears and anguish, which is felt ten-fold by the parents who are unable to provide for their children.

“Over the years the Family Appeal has gone from strength to strength and we never cease to be humbled by the kindness and generosity of the people and businesses of the North.

“We had our most successful Appeal ever last year and are hopeful there will be a record number of donated gifts in 2018.

“All donations no matter how small, are so much appreciated and will make a difference this Christmas.”

Donations can be dropped off at Foyle Street Bus Station. Gordon’s Chemists and Tesco stores across the province are also supporting the initiative by placing collection trolleys for the Appeal in stores.

All gifts must be new and unwrapped and the Appeal would especially welcome donations for older boys and girls; such as gift vouchers, board games, selection boxes, and toiletries.