Western Leader : November 19th 2010
www.westernleader.co.nz Friday, November 19, 2010 Apartments from $220,000 Hopper Developments Ltd Gain the freedom to sit back & enjoy life Phone now on 09 427 0090 / 0800 629 476 View us on Trade Me Properties 65 Tauranga Place, Orewa / www.maygroveorewa.co.nz The gift of Christmas By VANITA PRASAD Charitable Christmas: Aaron Wiki, 2, checks out the Henderson Kmart Wishing Tree. Photo: VANITA PRASAD TWO-YEAR-OLD Aaron Wiki will have plenty of presents waiting for him to unwrap on Christmas Day. But many other children in west Auck- land won't be so lucky. This week Henderson Kmart launched its annual Wishing Tree Appeal to collect presents so every child can unwrap a gift this Christmas. It's the 16th year the appeal has run and more than 3000 donated gifts went to west Auckland children in 2009. The store is hoping to collect a similar number this year. The presents go to the Salvation Army to distribute to needy families. The gifts collected at the store do not have to be bought from Kmart. Many families are struggling to make ends meet in the economic slump and the Salvation Army has been assisting more than ever before. Nationwide 28,000 families sought food from the charity this year. The Salvation Army has delivered more than 53,000 food parcels, up 23 percent from last year. There has been an alarming 38 percent increase in new fam- ilies who have turned to it for help for the first time. Salvation Army appeals co-ordinator Annabel Causer is urging people to get behind the Wishing Tree appeal and donate a gift. People are faced with extra financial and social pressure at Christmas time. It's the parents who face that but it's the chil- dren who miss out on the Christmas pleasure such as gifts and a nice lunch. More than ever we urge New Zealand- ers to remember families at this time and the children who wouldn't get presents without donations.'' Henderson Kmart duty manager Nor- man Ryan says presents left under the tree go to families who need them. There's a lot of underprivileged chil- dren out there and they really benefit from these. What you put under the tree goes straight to a child.'' After-school care company Skids Auck- land West is also collecting presents. Gifts and non-perishable food can be dropped off at four schools where Skids is run. Pupils at Titirangi Primary, Holy Cross Primary School, Henderson Valley and Arahoe Primary school are trying to gather hundreds of presents for the Sal- vation Army. Kim Hampson from Skids Auckland says the children are taking the task very seriously and are keen to donate as much as they can.
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