23 October 2018   |  Last Updated 18-12-2014 11:12

      Thursday 18, December 2014

      Make sure every child has a Merry Christmas

      CHRISTMAS is only a week away and most children will be eagerly hoping that Santa Claus will be bringing them the presents off their Christmas lists and maybe even some surprises.

      But there is a large portion of children who won’t have a Merry Christmas this year.

      All over the UK, over 3.5 million children live in poverty. This means that many children instead of worrying whether or not they will be getting the latest games console will be struggling to keep warm or even have a hot cooked meal this Christmas.

      Earlier this week the Daily Mail reported on a story about a woman who had left her husband for being a ‘Christmas Scrooge’, which sparked an outcry from people due to her insensitivity.

      Jacquie Pelc, from Dalguise in Scotland, went on about how she was forced to only spend “£100 on each of her sons” and her husband would only allow her to buy the “cheapest wrapping paper” to wrap all of her gifts, and how this year she will be able to toast with “real champagne”.

      The article sparked a debate among people who thought she had a nerve complaining about how terrible her Christmases have been, when there are hundreds of thousands of adults and children who won’t be able to have a Christmas in the UK alone.

      Here in Greater Manchester, there is the highest level of severe child poverty outside of London, with more than 1 in 3 children across the region living in poverty.

      This means that over 150,000 children in our area will wake up Christmas morning without any presents.

      Salford charity, Coffee4Craig, who deal with people in need of shelter, were delighted yesterday when a delivery of Christmas shoeboxes from Moorside High School arrived.

      Fie Lancaster, one of the co-founders, was visibly moved when school staff brought in the numerous parcels, "It's amazing. These boxes will help make a child's Christmas and their parents."

      Coffee4Craig will hand out the shoeboxes to people they give shelter to and to other charities, where adults in need will be able to give a present to their children this Christmas, who otherwise wouldn’t have been able to afford to do so.

      Another charity trying to ensure that as many children in the region will have a Happy Christmas is Cash for Kids, who have teamed up with local radio station, Key 103, for another year with their Mission Christmas appeal.

      The idea is that people buy an extra toy when doing their Christmas shopping and donate the gift at a local drop-off point and the present will go to a child who otherwise would not have anything to open.

      Last year, Cash for Kids generated over 180,000 gifts for children all over Manchester and hope to do equally as well this year, or even better.

      If you have a gift you would like to donate, here are some of the drop-off points in the Salford area.

      For any other drop-off points close to you, check out the Cash for Kids website.

      View Mission Christmas drop-off points in Salford in a full screen map

      By Robbie Kidd