Mayor’s Toy Appeal is back for Christmas 2023

The Mayor’s Christmas Toy Appeal for 2023 launches tomorrow, November 9, with its annual seasonal charity drive to collect Christmas presents for children of families who might otherwise go without.

Providing vital support to families facing financial hardship during the challenging festive season, the Mayor’s Toy Appeal has been running since 1987. Last year it helped a record 680 families under the leadership of Karen Collins, who was at the helm for seven years before stepping down in February this year. Ms Collins has been replaced by Trevor Crawford who will now oversee the donations for this Christmas.

The various designated local drop-off points will accept donations from November 10 to December 12. Local residents who wish to donate can order items from the charity’s Amazon Wishlist, buy appropriate toys from local shops or donate cash to the appeal, which provides toys for infants and children up to the age of 18. Any financial donations will be used to purchase gifts for children and young adults whose families are unable to buy gifts themselves.

Beneficiary families are referred to the appeal from Social Services, churches, schools and other agencies.

The charity will operate from a pop-up shop located opposite Taste of the Wells on the Upper Mall in Royal Victoria Place throughout November and early December. Other donation points can be found at Maddison’s Residential on The Pantiles, St George’s Childcare on Chilston Road, The Amelia Scott on Mount Pleasant Road, Trinity Theatre, Royal Victoria Place and Barsleys in Paddock Wood.

Donated presents must be brand new and appropriate for specific age groups. The Giving Trees at Royal Victoria Place and St George’s Childcare will once again feature
in this year’s appeal, giving disadvantaged children the chance to tie their Christmas wishes to the tree to be fulfilled by those wishing to donate a present.

To find out more about the Mayor’s Toy Appeal, visit the website at, or follow the charity on Instagram@mayorstoyappealtw

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