OPINION: christmas time to give

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Christmas is a time of over indulgence for many of us – too much eating, drinking, telly viewing and sleeping it all off.

Great, isn’t it?

But while we recharge the batteries, spare a thought for the less fortunate. In particular, more than 17,000 children who could wake on Christmas morning to find Santa hasn’t been.

That’s not the figure for some third world region, but right here, in South Yorkshire.

Hard to believe, isn’t it? But it’s the grim picture painted by social services and other official children’s organisations, such as Barnardo’s, Sheffield Women’s Aid and refuges.

One in five children live below the poverty line and that could mean no presents for thousands of them on Christmas morning, we are told.

But it can be different. You can change the way this story ends.

The Star has teamed up again with Hallam FM and Magic AM to back its Cash For Kids Mission Christmas appeal, in partnership with primary sponsor The Moor Market, supported by Best Solicitors, Foresters, Sheffield City Council and more.

We need over £800,000 worth of presents and to raise £60,000 to distribute to children’s charities and vulnerable children locally.

Want to help? Then simply buy one extra present this year and donate it. It’s that easy.

We want new and unwrapped gifts for children aged up to 18 years. There are over 200 drop-off points, including The Star shop in York Street. And if you can’t get out and about, you can still give a cash gift. You will find full details at thestar.co.uk, hallamfm.co.uk and magicam.co.uk

Many of you have already donated to this appeal, we thank you. To the rest of you, please add that one extra gift to your Christmas shopping list this weekend. It doesn’t need to break the bank. Even a small gesture will help to make a big difference.

It will mean the magical opening of presents on Christmas morning is even more special – knowing that Santa has been and given every child something to smile about in South Yorkshire.