Community spirit is alive and well in the run up to Christmas in Ramsgate. Despite what has been a unique and difficult year for so many, a local councillor has nothing but praise for Ramsgate people who have generously donated toys and gifts for local children.
Ramsgate Cllr Karen Constantine says she has been overwhelmed by the kindness of people and their willingness to help out to ensure no child will go without a present this Christmas after making a call out for donations via facebook last month.
She said: “Given the financial pressure parents are under this year, I was concerned that some children might not get toys this Christmas as so many families are having to tighten their belts, and it’s hard enough putting food on the table.
“I put a call out for people to donate new toys and they have flooded in! I think we can all understand the pressure some families are under this year and donating a nice toy will really help brighten Christmas and reduce stress on parents.”
The staff and volunteers at Monkton Nature Reserve, who would usually hold a Christmas sale to raise funds but are now unable to open to the public due to Covid restrictions, were among those to answer the donations call.
They have donated toys, decorations and Christmas goodies to help local families.
A volunteer at the reserve said she saw the request for toys on Facebook and discussed it with the management team, John, Les and Trevor, and they generously decided to donate all of their Christmas stock rather than hold on to it until next year.
Mum and grandmother Jacquie Brazil also donated, She said: “It has been a very hard year for so many people and I think if you have a little left over then it could help take away worries from others who don’t have enough. I know presents maybe are extravagant compared with food but some of these children have lost enough this year without losing out on a little Christmas cheer.”
Donations of new or very nearly new toys can be made until December 14. Cllr Constantine can collect.
Parents and carers who would like to collect presents for their children can contact Cllr Karen Constantine on Facebook or on 07984 532212. They will be invited to come along to a ‘mini shop’ on December 17.
Covid prevention measures will be in place. Hand sanitiser, strict social distancing and face masks will all be used and people are being asked to bring a carrier bag with them.