How to support those in need this Christmas?

We've watched the pandemic play out on a global scale and it’s left lots of us with a renewed eagerness to help others. No matter who you are or what your situation, you can make a difference. This year reconnect with your community and help people local to you by donating food, money or supplies to charities, volunteering virtually or physically, or simply checking in on neighbours who might need support. 

This Christmas spread a little love, do random acts of kindness and enjoy the art of giving; here are some simple ideas of how you can make a difference this festive season:

Donate to your local food bank

The Trussell Trust supports a nationwide network of food banks across the UK, this year they estimate a 61% increase in demand for food parcels compared to last year. Donating to your local food bank is a great way to help local families struggling this year. You can find your nearest foodbank here. 

On your next trip to the supermarket, buy a few extra goodies and essentials, box them up and drop off to your local food bank who will deliver to families struggling this Christmas. See what a typical food parcel would include by clicking here.

Become a phone friend 

Age UK is working harder than ever this year to relieve loneliness and support the elderly through these challenging times. During the coronavirus pandemic, many people have been cut off from society and are experiencing loneliness; offering a phone friendship to someone can make all the difference. You can sign up to their regular telephone friendship service to receive these phone calls or volunteer to call someone. Click here to receive calls or here to volunteer.

Donate books to children in need 

The Book Trust works with children centres, schools, libraries and health professionals to reach families who need them most. This Christmas they are asking people to donate as little as £10 so they can send a vulnerable child a special gift book. 

Our Marketing Executive, Jamie, arranged a book donation scheme urging the public to donate books that would then be wrapped and re-distributed to children less fortunate. In total over 100 books were redistributed across the country to places such as schools, food banks and charitable organisations putting together stockings for children this Christmas.

Making a small donation like this can make all the difference to a child's Christmas. If you’d like to donate, please click here.

Help the homeless this Christmas 

Crisis are one of the UK’s leading homeless charities helping to end homelessness by providing hundreds of vulnerable people with access to education, training and support from housing, employment and health care. 

This Christmas you can donate £28.88 to gift a homeless person with access to: 

  • Friendship and support from volunteer befrienders 
  • Essential food and festive treats
  • A place to stay over Christmas
  • Year-round support including training and education

Give the gift of a Crisis Christmas and help change someone’s life. Click here.

This year, donate close to your heart to help local charities and communities during these challenging times. Likewise, don't forget the small gestures you can do to remind family and friends you’re thinking of them. Reconnect by sending Christmas cards and gifts or pick up the phone; the smallest acts of kindness can make the biggest difference this year.