The annual appeal, organised by the council’s staff-run ‘Giving Back’ charity for the past 9 years, is accepting donations until Wednesday, 13 December 2023.
Councillor Rachel Massey, cabinet member for children’s services and education at Rochdale Borough Council, said:
“This annual appeal helps to provide local children and families with gifts on Christmas day who would otherwise likely go without. Sadly our Christmas Toy Appeal is needed more than ever, with the cost of living crisis impacting so many. The requests for help we have already received reflect the daily challenges that many children and young people are facing. Every year we see so much heart-warming generosity – if you can buy at least one extra present, you’ll really bring some joy to a local young person.”
To help, all you need to do is donate an unwrapped, new gift suitable for a child up to 16 years-old and leave it at your local library or Your Trust leisure centre by Wednesday, 13 December 2023. Gifts for babies and teenagers would be especially welcome as fewer were received for these age groups in 2022. There are also extra collection points open at the Rochdale Riverside retail and leisure destination (management office on first floor), The Beach pub in Littleborough and the Crown Oil Arena.
Council staff, who distributed over 5,000 toys in 2022, will make sure they reach the borough’s less fortunate children in time for Christmas Day. Toys are matched with the age and interests of the recipient. Since 2014 the appeal has provided much needed festive cheer for thousands of children and teenagers.
Councillor Massey with staff and gifts at Highfield Hospital in 2022. The hospital on Manchester Road in Rochdale is supporting the appeal again in 2023.
Council policy advisor Helen Walton, from the Giving Back charity, added:
“Every donation we receive goes to a child who would otherwise be likely not to have any presents to unwrap on Christmas Day. The appeal depends on the generosity of people and businesses in our borough, and every year I am so proud of how many care enough to donate. Together we can make a difference for the borough’s most vulnerable and disadvantaged children at a time when it is most needed.”
As Christmas raises awareness of the excess and waste created, once again organisers are asking people to consider donating a more environmentally friendly gift and supporting local shops where they can.
You can also order a gift online and send it straight to the appeal. The address is: Giving Back – Christmas Toy Appeal, Rochdale Borough Council, Number One Riverside, Smith Street, Rochdale OL16 1XU. Gifts will need to have been received by Wednesday, 13 December 2023.
The appeal is organised by the ‘Rochdale Giving Back’ charity in partnership with Rochdale Borough Council, Rochdale Football Club, Your Trust and Rochdale Town Centre Management.
Some local businesses and organisations have already stepped up to support the appeal, including JGM Agency, Hunter Price, Rochdale Football Club and Rochdale Riverside.
If your business can support the appeal then please contact the team on [email protected]