Generosity helps to make Christmas a happier time

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It’s Christmas Eve and the big day is almost upon us. Come tomorrow and we’ll be ripping open that small mountain of presents under the tree, then raising our glasses before tucking into turkey and all the trimmings followed by Christmas pudding.

Or at least most of us will.

But what about those less fortunate who simply cannot afford to buy gifts or the ingredients to prepare a traditional Christmas dinner?

While we look forward to the excesses of the festive season, there are plenty of people out there for whom Christmas is something to be endured rather than enjoyed.

In what have been some pretty harsh economic times of late, there will be those who have lost their jobs and seen their personal circumstances change dramatically.

So at a time of year when it is all too easy to think only of ourselves, we have been overwhelmed by your generosity in contributing to our Christmas Food Appeal.

Dozens of trolleys full of food, from Christmas puddings to chocolate and vegetables, have now been distributed to food banks and shelters and delivered to those in desperate need.

Thanks to your generosity, hundreds of families struggling financially will be able to have a nice Christmas instead of worrying about having no money to buy even the basics.

Of course, we know from experience that our readers never fail to respond when we ask for their help.

But it is always so heartwarming to see such caring and a real sense of community spirit in action.

Meanwhile we also report today that more than 68,000 new toys were donated to radio station Wave 105’s Mission Christmas appeal, which was supported by readers of The News.

They will go to children who otherwise would not have been getting anything to open on Christmas Day.

A big thank you to everybody who donated to either appeal – you have really helped to make somebody else’s Christmas.