A community Christmas Giving campaign has provided over 70 gifts for children and young people living in Epping Forest, who may not have otherwise received presents at this festive time of year.
The scheme, run by Epping Forest District Council and supported by Voluntary Action Epping Forest and Essex Police, ran both a crowd-funding campaign and gift donation drop-off scheme at the new Civic Hub, based at EFDC Civic Offices.
Around £700 in donations and 40 donated presents were received from the local community; including generous donations from Grange Farm Trust, fundraising efforts from Waltham Abbey Football Club and local councillor, Jeanie Lea, and a multiple gift-giver from Loughton.
The Civic Hub, which opened in September, provides a space for the general public to meet and gain support from multi-agency district council services teams and wider, community partner organisations, including Citizens Advice, Jobcentre Plus, Epping Forest Foodbank and many other local organisations, service providers and charities who provide personal support to local residents.
Through a network of referrals, principally involving Voluntary Action Epping Forest, Epping Forest Foodbank, Epping Forest Schools Partnership Trust and Essex Police, local children were identified and suitable gifts were allocated and delivered.
Epping Forest Foodbank will deliver many of these with their Food in School Holiday food parcels Local schools have selected families for extra help over the school holidays.
Photo- staff from EFDC, VAEF, United In Kind and some young helpers after wrapping over 70 presents.