What is The Toy AppealThe Toy Appeal journey started five years ago when Chris & Dee Drake volunteered at The Lalley Centre in Collyhurst, one of the poorest areas of Manchester, where they helped the infamous Sister Rita (as featured in the BBC1 observational series “Sister Rita to the Rescue”) to pack 234 toy sacks for local under privileged children. It was a profound experience and inspired Chris & Dee to found the charity the ‘Toy Appeal – Give a Child a Christmas’ in 2013.
This small charity has grown rapidly, starting in 2013 it provided Christmas Toy sacks to 447 children in the Manchester and Cheshire area, by 2017 it had grown to 3000 children, with the aim for 2019 to reach 4000-5000 children.
Who does The Toy Appeal helpThe charity is child focused, working with schools, social workers, community drop in centres and young adult and baby units who provide The Toy Appeal with lists of families who need help to ensure their children receive presents at Christmas.
Each toy sack is made specifically for each child, based on their age and gender and the child’s name is added to the sack. This means toys can be chosen that are appropriate to them and will hopefully brighten their day on Christmas morning, removing the huge pressure some parents are under at what can be a very stressful time of the year.
Who does The Toy Appeal helpEach child receives a red toy sack with their name on from Santa and it contains:
- A main present
- Stocking fillers
- 2 Books
- Teddy to cuddle
- A board game or puzzle to engage families in fun around a table
- Active item e.g. football, skipping rope, badminton set
- Arts or crafts item - some to get the child making things and being creative
- Toiletries (older children)
Who does The Toy Appeal helpThe Toy Appeal is looking for donations of a variety of NEW TOYS (not second hand) for boys and girls of all ages, from newborn to age 18. So far, this year they have very few toys for boys and girls aged between 8 and 12, and would really appreciate toys for these age groups. The toys don’t need to be expensive as everything is gratefully received. However please do not send DVD’s, music and electrical items as often the children do not have access to DVD players etc. Football team memorabilia is to be avoided too as in a city as passionate about football as Manchester they do not want to give a United fan a City scarf!
There are a number of drop off points in Knutsford, Hale, Wilmslow and the wider area. Details can be found on the web page*. If you feel that you are able to help, you can also drop donations at the office in Knutsford, or my home in Hale (contact the office for the address) or pass them to me at any meeting prior to Friday 6th December.
Alternatively, you may prefer to make a donation to their Just Giving page* to enable them to purchase toys.
Every toy and every penny donated goes directly to the children as other resources are kindly provided by local people and businesses.
The Toy Appeal will be making up the sacks on Monday 9th December. Please note that our office will be closed for most of the day on Monday 9th December as we donate our time to put together the individual sacks.
* Links from this website exist for information only and we accept no responsibility or liability for the information contained on any such sites. The existence of a link to another website does not imply or express endorsement of its provider, product or services by us or St. James's Place. Please note that clicking a link will open the external website in a new window or tab.