Widnes Vikings are delighted to be supporting the Halton Christmas Toy Appeal, which aims to help disadvantaged children in the borough receive a gift this Christmas.
The aim of the initiative is to help children who wouldn’t normally receive a present enjoy a special Christmas this year, in which they will receive gifts donated by those who are more fortunate.
The Halton Christmas Toy Appeal was created five years ago by Nicky Woodward, who discovered that a facility to donate toys to children wasn’t available within the borough. Since then the initiative has gone from strength to strength, with the aim of raising the profile of the appeal through businesses in the borough signing up to be drop-off points.
Last year, over 350 children received gifts from the Toy Appeal who would have ordinarily woken up on Christmas morning without a present to unwrap, and the Vikings are aiming to help even more children enjoy a special festive period this year.
All toys donated before Thursday 12th December will be distributed throughout Halton to refuge, social services, care homes, care workers, Foodbanks, Schools and children’s centres. Individual families who meet the correct criteria will also benefit from the appeal, as well as those who attend St Paul’s Church in Widnes for Christmas dinner.
By partnering up with the Halton Christmas Toy Appeal the Vikings Club Shop within Widnes Market will be a drop-off point for gifts from Wednesday 27th November to Thursday 12th December.
Those wishing to donate to this fantastic initiative can visit the Club Shop during normal opening hours, and must ensure that all toys are new, unopened and unwrapped.
Phil Finney, Widnes Vikings CEO, commented: “We’re delighted to be a part of this year’s Halton Christmas Toy Appeal in order to help our supporters donate to this fantastic cause.
“I’d like to thank Stephen Oultram and Liz Hindley of our supporters group WISSL, as they were instrumental in bringing to our attention the incredible work that Nicky Woodward is doing to help disadvantaged children in Halton this Christmas.
“When the club needed the support of our community the most, they came out in force and helped save Widnes Vikings, so we’re looking to return the favour and help support children who need it the most this Christmas.
“A big part of our club moving forward is becoming a vehicle within the town and the borough that can provide positive life experiences to those within our community, and there is no better way of doing this than by supporting the Halton Christmas Toy Appeal.
“In order to help this initiative meet and exceed its targets, we will need all of our supporters, sponsors, staff and players to get behind the Halton Christmas Toy Appeal and donate a toy at our Club Shop.”
Nicky Woodward, Chairman of the Halton Christmas Toy Appeal, added: “No child should ever go without at Christmas.
“I just couldn’t imagine how this felt and that’s when I decided to create the Halton Christmas Toy Appeal to help all disadvantaged children living in Halton. All we ask is for the community to buy an extra present or gift this Christmas and donate it at one of our drop-off locations highlighted.
“We have grown massively in the five years since our launch and more businesses have got on board than ever before, but nothing as big as Widnes Vikings. I am so happy we now have support from the Vikings, who are such an icon in Halton with the massive fan base they have.
“The aim of the appeal is to get as many people within the community involved by advertising throughout businesses within Halton. Having the Vikings onboard will help raise awareness and hopefully ensure that no child in the borough has to go without this Christmas.”
If you would like to contact the Halton Christmas Toy Appeal for more information or to nominate your business as a drop-off point, contact Nicky Woodward on [email protected].
You can also find the toy appeal on Twitter at @haltontoyappeal, Instagram at @haltonchristmastoy or Facebook at haltonchristmastoyappeal.