Wrapping up a successful Toy Appeal
Well the dust has now settled on the festive season and I hope you and your family had a good time. The dust has now also settled on ELBA’s annual Toy Appeal. Once again the records have been smashed. A record 9,704 donations of new toys, totalling a value of £116,443, making 2017 our biggest appeal yet.
It is a pause for thought that here in one of the World’s great cities, in the fourth or fifth largest economy, we still need to collect toys at Christmas. In actual fact at ELBA we have seen a big increase in demand for support and toys at Christmas. We’re pleased to say we’ve been able to meet much of that as a result of the generosity of the employees of our business partners.
The truth is that there are high levels of children living in poverty and these levels are persisting. According to the latest version of London’s Poverty Profile, 43% of children in Tower Hamlets live below the poverty line, and it’s 37-38% in each of Newham, Hackney, Islington and Barking and Dagenham.
The toys donated were gifted from individuals within the businesses not our companies themselves – but done with their support and coordination. It’s nice to consider how many people consciously chose to think of others this December. A very humbling thought, particularly in the current context. So many children will be benefiting from these donations this month and we’ve already started having the thank you’s come in, for example from the Centre Director at Royal Docks Learning and Activity Centre, who said:
“I just wanted to say a big thank you to you and the Elba team for arranging the toys – especially in time for our first Parents & toddlers party! They were so happy to receive gifts from “Mother Christmas”! This is not something that we would have been done without your support.”
Whilst a local mother expressed her gratitude:
“My name is Rashidat Salau and I am a mother of six and absolutely happy right now. I would like to say a big thank you to community organisation, Triangols, for what you did for my kids. They really had fun, the entertainment was nice, the food was amazing, all the toys made magic, seeing lots of children very happy and excited to have free toys, especially those who couldn’t afford it.”
So that’s a wrap for this year. A big thank you to everyone who helped with the Toy Appeal and made it possible with gifts and also giving time to volunteer in the promotion, coordination, and practical logistics of another very successful and necessary campaign.
Written by Abigail Micallef, Project Manager, Challenge ELBA.