Staff at an East Ayrshire care home are organizing a ‘toy drive’ which will see more than 40 local children receive Christmas gifts they would not otherwise receive.
Argyll House, part of Mansfield Care, is donating gifts to East Ayrshire Women’s Aid who will distribute them to child victims of domestic abuse.
There are over 200 children in the East Ayrshire region alone who are being cared for by East Ayrshire Women’s Aid this Christmas.
The charity aims to provide support and refuge to women, children and young people who have suffered directly or from the repercussions of domestic violence.
The idea came from house team leader Elaine Martin, who offered the staff to swap their Secret Santa gifts for the charitable donation.
Elaine said: “We don’t need a secret Santa, but every child deserves a Christmas.
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“I thought it was a good idea to get everyone involved in a good cause this year and to ditch Secret Santa in order to really benefit the children of East Ayrshire.
“East Ayrshire Women’s Aid do an amazing job – we have very generous staff at Argyll House so it was not difficult to convince our team of 40 to get involved and help spread festive joy to those who may not have any present at all.
“We have already seen a great mix of gifts ranging from bath bombs to children’s toys and pajamas. We are delighted to have made a small difference this Christmas with the help of East Ayrshire Women’s Aid.
Kilmarnock care home staff picked tags from a bucket with age and gender information and bought gifts for the child described on his toy collection tag.
East Ayrshire Women’s Aid team leader Caroline McKenzie said: “It’s amazing how generous people are. We are very grateful to the staff at Argyll House for their incredibly kind donation. It will really go a long way.
“By devoting their money, time and effort to helping those who are hurting, they will make Christmas so much better for caregivers, parents and children who are victims of domestic violence.
“Special occasions like Christmas often bring bad memories for children who suffer from domestic violence, as tensions often rise at this time of year. East Ayrshire Women’s Aid tries to change the perception of what Christmas means to these children .
“We want to create new memories for kids who don’t usually have the best Christmas.”
Children up to 16 in and around the East Ayrshire community will benefit from the kindness of the care home this year and will have presents to open on Christmas Day.
Elaine added: “It’s okay, it’s something we’ll try to do every year instead of Secret Santa.
“It has brought us closer together as a care home knowing that we are enhancing the experience for so many children over the holiday season.”
To find out more about Mansfield Care, Kilmarnock, visit, https://www.mansfieldcare.co.uk/
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