Children 1st, Scotland’s national children’s charity are asking people across Scotland to spread the gifts of joy, hope, magic or love at www.givethegift.org.uk this Christmas to support vulnerable children and families.
People can use the Give the Gift website to share one of these gifts with someone special in their own lives while also making a donation to support the charity’s work with vulnerable children and families in Dundee and across the country.
The charity, which launched their appeal today, worked alongside almost 11,000 children, parents and carers across Scotland last year to help them tackle the challenges they face and develop the nurturing, caring and loving relationships their children need to grow up safe and happy.1 Many of the families the charity supports have experienced trauma as a result of poverty, bereavement, violence, substance misuse, neglect, abuse or other issues.
Launching the Give the Gift Christmas fundraising appeal, Mary Glasgow Children 1st’s Acting Chief Executive said: “For most children Christmas is a lovely time, but for thousands of children across Scotland living with trauma and adversity, it can be just another day filled with hopelessness or fear. By making a donation to our Give the Gift appeal you can help protect, prevent and support children to recover from harm, so that they can experience joy, magic, love and hope – at Christmas and throughout the year.”
Support for Children 1st’s Give the Gift fundraising appeal will help children and families, like Joshua* age nine.
Before he met Children 1st, Joshua felt like he didn’t belong anywhere. His Mum was often ill and his Dad would get angry all the time. Joshua would burst into a rage at school, but in the playground he was quiet and didn’t join in. He felt ashamed to invite classmates home because there weren’t any toys for them to play with. There was no money for the family to go out and do anything together and they didn’t always have enough to eat.
Everything changed after Joshua’s teacher put his family in touch with Children 1st. A Children 1st family support worker encouraged the family to talk about the issues they face and to seek support. Children 1st helped the family to manage their finances and find toys for the children. The charity supported Joshua’s Mum to get help with her health worries and his Dad to manage his anger. A Children 1st volunteer spent lots of time with Joshua, helping him overcome his anxiety and build his self-esteem. Children 1st discovered Joshua loved sport and encouraged his Mum to take the whole family swimming for the very first time - Joshua thought this was amazing.
Now the family enjoy going swimming together once a week. Joshua plays in the school football team with his new friends and he feels like he belongs. He’s doing better in class and for the first time there’s lots of laughter in his life –with friends and with his family.
By making a suggested donation of £5 to Children 1st at www.givethegift.org.uk this Christmas, you can spread the gifts of joy, magic, hope and love to other children and families, like Joshua’s.
* Names and identification details have been changed to protect the family’s anonymity.