Refuge launches gift appeal
Presents sought for kids affected by family violence
Women’s Refuge has launched its nationwide Give a Gift appeal, asking Kiwis to donate presents to children affected by domestic violence this Christmas.
Bunnings is pleased to be supporting the campaign by encouraging residents to drop off donations at their local store until Friday, December 21.
Women’s Refuge chief executive Dr Ang Jury says it can be common for women who are fleeing from violent relationships around Christmas to leave with nothing, which includes the presents under the tree.
In December last year, almost all of the Women’s Refuge safe houses around the country were at capacity, with 1629 children among the occupants.
“Christmas is a particularly stressful time of the year for most people, and the addition of family violence can seriously impact what is supposed to be a joyful and fun occasion for all,” says Ang.
“All of the wha¯nau we work with during the festive season just want to give their kids a safe and happy Christmas — we believe every child deserves this.
“We need New Zealand’s help so that all the families we work with can open a gift on Christmas day and celebrate the holiday with joy and dignity.”
Ang says while gifts are needed for all children doing it tough, teenage boys can often be forgotten at Christmas.
“Boys aged 8-16 can be an especially tough age to buy for, and because of this they often miss out on presents at Christmas. Nice clothing, sports equipment such as soccer balls and cricket sets, headphones and backpacks are all useful gifts for young boys.
“For all age groups, soothing toys and equipment are most helpful in the aftermath of trauma such as sensory toys, art supplies or building blocks that create entertainment for a long time. We ask that gifts are unwrapped, so they can be best distributed to local Women’s Refuge centres who will assist families in need.”
Unfortunately, New Zealand has one of the highest rates of domestic violence in the world, with an act of family violence reported every five and a half minutes. In 2017, 4847 women and children called on the help of Women’s Refuge during the Christmas period.
Gift donations accepted at all Bunnings stores until Friday, December 21. Check our Facebook page for a chart of suggested gifts.
Women's Refuge chief executive Dr Ang Jury with Judd and Jazmyn Warbrick and members of her local Bunnings team.