Toy ap­peal boost

Dona­tions roll in from Hal­lowe’en party

Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser - - News - Ju­dith Ton­ner

The Ad­ver­tiser’s fifth an­nual toy ap­peal is off to a fly­ing start – thanks to the wizards, witches and colour­ful char­ac­ters at­tend­ing an Air­drie Hal­loween party.

Young­sters at­tend­ing the spe­cial event or­gan­ised by Cairn­hill mum- of- two Jennifer Nis­bet were all asked to bring along a do­na­tion for this year’s toy ap­peal, to make it a merry Christ­mas for chil­dren across Mon­k­lands.

The guests and their fam­i­lies re­sponded in style, bring­ing along more than 60 gifts to get our ap­peal off to the best pos­si­ble start.

Jennifer be­gan host­ing the “fright­fully de­light­ful howl-o-een hul­la­baloo” – now in its fourth year – for daugh­ters Honor and Imogen, aged five and two, and all their friends.

She told the Ad­ver­tiser: ““It was very small in the first year, with only about 10 chil­dren hav­ing a party at my house, but it’s just kept get­ting big­ger over the past cou­ple of years with all the girls’ school­mates and friends, so now I have to hold it in a hall!

“This year was the big­gest party to date, and the chil­dren ranged in age from seven years to two months. They had a great time and their cos­tumes were amaz­ing.

“Each year I ask guests to bring along a Christ­mas toy or gift for lo­cal chil­dren; in pre­vi­ous years they’ve gone to the church or the Sal­va­tion Army ap­peal, and this is the first time we’ve given them di­rect to the Ad­ver­tiser ap­peal.

“It’s by far the big­gest col­lec­tion we’ve ever had; there was a ta­ble set up in the hall which was cov­ered in toys within a short time of every­body ar­riv­ing.

“Our kids get so much and I just want them to ap­pre­ci­ate what they have and re­alise there are kids out here who don’t have any­thing.”

Guests at the party, held at Clark­ston par­ish church hall, en­joyed a disco and games from Mu­sic Ma­nia and were vis­ited by pop­u­lar Paw Pa­trol char­ac­ters Chase and Mar­shall.

Jennifer added: “I love Hal­lowe’en; it’s one of my favourite times of year as I just love see­ing all kids dressed up in their great cos­tumes.

“We had a very happy Hal­lowe’en and were de­lighted to col­lect a fan­tas­tic amount of toys for the ap­peal.”

Now fel­low kind-hearted Mon­k­lands res­i­dents are be­ing asked to make it a merry Christ­mas for de­serv­ing lo­cal young­sters by do­nat­ing new, un­used gifts for chil­dren aged up to 16 years.

They can be handed in from now un­til Wed­nes­day, De­cem­ber 13, at the col­lec­tion points set up at Asda in Coat­bridge, Mor­risons in Air­drie, and both towns’ branches of Tesco.

Our fifth an­nual Christ­mas toy ap­peal launched last week with the sup­port of staff mem­bers from all of the lo­cal su­per­mar­kets, plus vol­un­teers from Spirit Aid and XACT (Ex-Air­drie and Coat­bridge Round Tablers), who help to dis­trib­ute the items to lo­cal young­sters and good causes.

Items can be do­nated for kids rang­ing in age from new­born to teens; the only re­quire­ment is that they are new and in their pack­ag­ing. Gifts for older teens are also grate­fully re­ceived.

XACT chair Nor­bert Grant said: “We’re all de­lighted to be part of a great tra­di­tion –the toy ap­peal and our group’s Santa sleigh tour.

“Both show that the peo­ple of Air­drie and Coat­bridge are the most gen­er­ous in Scot­land.”

Dressed to im­press Hal­loween young­sters do­nate to toy ap­peal

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