At the end of November, Salisbury Radio joined ReQuire Consultancy in their quest to help children have the best Christmas possible this year.
Louise at ReQuire Consultancy originally had the idea:
Christmas is a really magical time and will have more importance than ever this year. However, sadly there are more people than ever that are really struggling. We really wanted to get the entire Salisbury community behind this so there isn’t a single child that went without a present this Christmas.
2020 has been hard for many people because of the Coronavirus pandemic and it was apparent that more children and families were really struggling this year. Very quickly The Great Big Salisbury Christmas Toy Appeal was launched with the aim of making a few families Christmases a little brighter by having a few presents to open on Christmas day.
The team set some small targets and partnered with St Paul’s Church and Kerry Badger who coordinated the referrals from local organisations, charities and other partners. It soon became clear that there were many children and families that could be helped.
There was a call for help and the Salisbury, South Wiltshire and West Hampshire community have delivered in the most generous way. All expectations have been exceeded and many families and children have been helped.
Over £10,000 has been donated in both cash and toy donations with over 700 toys being distributed to over 200 local children from the referrals received by Kerry and the team at St Paul’s.
All of the donations had to be sorted, packaged up and delivered. This was done by a team of volunteers, who sticking to Covid guidelines, delivered presents across the area over the last 4 days in time for them to be given to the children on Christmas day.
Support from local businesses and organisations has been fantastic, you can check out the Advent Calendar which is updated daily both on our website and on our social media channels. All the businesses and organisations listed supported the appeal in a significant way.
In addition to this, the Toy Appeal was able to support the Little Folly Children’s Centre on Bemerton Heath with a pile of toys and the appeal was also able to purchase items on their Amazon wishlist ahead of Christmas.
The appeal was also able to purchase £500 of items on another Amazon wishlist, this time supporting Care Leavers who are being supported by Wiltshire Council Social Services, enabling these young people to have a little extra this Christmas as they transition from care to independent living.
The appeal also teamed up with Nationwide Building Society in Salisbury who came and collected a trolly full of toys to donate to Salisbury Hospice, these toys will be shared with children who will be spending time with their parents in the hospice over Christmas.
Andy from Salisbury Radio said:
We were really pleased when Louise and Liam at ReQuire contacted us to help with the appeal. Although we are a brand new station and still only broadcasting test transmissions we wanted to get involved. The response has been fantastic with help coming from all parts of the community from businesses to groups and individuals. At the station, we want to be a part of the community and we want to be able to help where we can. I have always been proud to say that I am from Salisbury and the response to appeals like this make me even more proud of my city.
Although the Appeal is now closed to donations, the appeal continues to support organisations and watch out for more updates ahead of Christmas Day.