Appeals are launched for the disadvantaged

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TWO appeals have been launched to help disadvantaged children enjoy a happy Christmas this year.

The Rotary Club of Stamford St Martin’s is once again running its Christmas tree appeal, where it asks people to visit one of the places which has a tree and collect a label.

Each label is marked with the sex and age of a child and the person is asked to buy that child a present, which costs between £5 and £10, and then return it gift-wrapped to be put under the tree.

All the presents collected will be distributed to needy children across the area and charities benefiting will include Home-Start, Peterborough Welfare, The Down’s Syndrome Association and local hospitals.

Last year’s appeal collected about 1,000 parcels and rotarian George Hetherington is urging people to be generous again.

He said: “The appeal is important because it enables children, who might not otherwise get a gift, to get something.

“The amount of parcels we receive increases every year and we hope people will continue to be as generous as always.

“Our club estimated that the value of the gifts last year was about £10,000 because a lot of people spend more than the suggested donation.

“We deliver the gifts to Christmas parties, which is logistically a huge challenge, so anyone who would like to donate should bring in a present as soon as possible.

“It really will make a huge difference to that child this Christmas.”

There are labels on the tree in the Mercury office in Sheep Market, Stamford.

Stamford Independent Travel in St Paul’s Street is running the Santa’s suitcase appeal, where people are asked to bring in gifts for children to fill a suitcase.

The gifts donated will be given to the Stamford-based charity Home-Start, which promotes the welfare of families with at least one child under the age of five by offering uspport and advice.