Colin Grainger

We’ve done it again – Newham Christmas Toy Appeal hits target

FOR the last 42 years a remarkable campaign in the community in Newham has spread much needed joy to children who need it most.

And I am happy to report today that the Newham Christmas Toy Appeal has reached its target of 18,000 toys – an incredible achievement.

It has taken much hard work from everyone involved. The kindness and generosity shown has helped change the lives of some young ones who would otherwise have lost out.

It has been a massive effort and we would like to thank everyone for their donations.

The roll of honour shows exactly what our campaign is all about. From large donations to small, from national and local firms to individuals and groups, the people who came forward have all been so special to us.

MACE construction, who have been supporting charity Ambition, Aspire, Achieve, since its inception three years ago, gave us over 500 gifts, along with a donation of £5,000, and also helped with volunteering and support from their supply chain.

Lego, donated Lego sets and also volunteers gave their help at various times in the campaign.

Magic Radio’s Cash for Kids campaign gave the campaign toys worth £5,000.

  • Newham Chamber of Commerce with their gifts

The Giving Tree at the Bluewater shopping experience donated 1,000 gifts.

There were toy collections held by: Tate & Lyle Sugars; Farrells Architects;

Frogmore; Chevron; Close Brothers; Reed Smith; Lendlease; Financial Control Authority; Chelsfield; Valero and Janus Henderson.

Additional toy collections boosted our total. They were held by: Investec; Bywaters;

Forest School; Aspers Casino E15; CVC – Capital Partners; East London Business Alliance; University of East London; Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP; 3i; Education Space; RIP Fitness (Dave McQueen); All Saints, Writtle; Zurich Insurance; iiaa; Newham Rotary Club; Newham Bookshop; Scholastic Childrens Books; The Fence Club; St Nicholas – Kelvedon Hatch; West Ham United and Rose Bennett.

Little Brother Books donated books, and gifts were given by kindhearted bikers, Newham Chamber of Commerce and Newham Mayor Rokhsana Fiaz

  • Newham Bookshop hand over their gifts

Financial donations came from: Thames Water; Berkeley Homes – South East London; Barratts; IOD Skips; Upsdales; London Ragamuffins; Candl-ibrium;

CVC Capital Partners; Aspers; Mount Anvil; Newham’s Accor Hotels (Novatel and Ibis); B. Byrne; 3i; Lister School; London Legacy Development Corporation;

Erith Group; Alloy Fabweld; Careys Foundation; J Coffey Construction Ltd;

Blu3 and the Royal Docks Trust,

Colin Grainger raised over £600 through his sponsored swim,

Kindhearted bikers led by organiser John Pryke staged a bike run for the appeal and The Deborah Day Theatre Trust staged a special show to raise funds.

  • Little Brother Books in Exeter supported our campaign

We’d also like to thank all the individuals who have donated via the appeal giving site or dropped off donations, or contributed to bucket collections and other events.

There’s a special thank you to John Murphy Managing Director of Quattro Plant Hire – for the toy warehouse, all those who manned the drop off points all over Newham and all the volunteers who have helped at the Toy Warehouse over the past six weeks and Sophie Cox and all the staff of the Newham Recorder for their amazing commitment.

Kevin Jenkins, Toy Appeal founder co-ordinator said: “It started as a trickle of gifts and donations and ended in a torrent of goodies and donations pouring in over the last seven days from businesses, schools, clubs, organisations and individual residents. This ensured that each child referred to the campaign was able to wake up to a Christmas stocking on Christmas Day morning.

“I thank everyone who contributed to the appeal from the bottom of my heart, for giving Newham’s most disadvantaged children a real Christmas.”

Nearly 2,500 children have received these unique gifts of kindness. And this year the appeal was facilitated by charity Ambition, Aspire, Achieve and run jointly with the Newham Recorder and Community Links.

Without our annual Christmas appeal thousands of children in Newham would go without. It is an appeal at the heart of all that is good in the community in East London.

  • Deborah Day school pupils

I am proud to have been a part of this campaign for all its 42 years, the first in many editorial roles and then for 15 years as Editor of the Recorder. In the last seven years I have been a Freeman of Links and a patron of the appeal, and a trustee of Ambition, Aspire, Achieve.

The paper, AAA and Links joined up again for the campaign to reach out to thousands of vulnerable children, families and adults. And the festive spirit shone brightly locally.

The Recorder will say their own special thank you’s to some remarkable people in paper and on their website and social media in the coming days .

Finally, it is time to  thank you all 18,000 times over for helping the appeal reach its target. It really does your heart good to know people are willing to make a difference.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy 2020.





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