30 years of giving gifts at Christmas
CHRISTMAS is supposed to be a time of joy, but for some it’s also a time of increased financial pressure.
Extra bills, special meals and holiday activities added onto everyday living costs can make it a stressful time of the year.
This is why during the month of December the Salvation Army assists three times more people compared to any other month.
Matthew, his partner Kelly and their eight children are just some of the thousands the Salvation Army helped during Christmas last year.
The family was between rental houses and had to resort to living in holiday accommodation.
“That time of year you want the kids to have a great time and it was hard to think we couldn’t give them a great Christmas,” he said.
Their children received presents through the Kmart Wishing Tree and Matthew said it was the biggest blessing.
“It’s hard to actually put into words how it helped, we wouldn’t have had the Christmas we had without them,” he said.
This year is the appeals 30th anniversary and over the years more than 8 million gifts have been given to children across Australia.
Salvation Army community fundraising coordinator Leanne Harrison said it’s amazing to see how the gifts help.
“It gives them Christmas back, a lot of them can’t afford to put dinner on the table,” she said.
The Salvation Army expects to help around 300,000 people through this year’s appeal.
The wishing tree will launch on November 15 at 10am at both the Maroochydore and Caloundra Kmart.
For more information, visit kmart.com/wishingtree.
GIFT OF GIVING: Salvation Army personnel Steph Savage with Kmart Caloundra store manager Matt Dodd launching a previous Wishing Tree.