OPINION: New NSPCC campaigns will help children get most out of Christmas

A still from the new Childline Christmas video, Preparing For Christmas

A still from the new NSPCC Christmas video, Preparing For Christmas - Credit: Abbie Trayler-Smith

Once again, we find ourselves surrounded by red, gold and brown leaves, the mornings are darker and the air is noticeably crisp. For many of us this can only mean one thing – the countdown to Christmas has begun.

At the NSPCC, we know that some children and young people won’t be looking forward to any yuletide celebrations this year.

Many will be suffering with feelings of loneliness and depression and some will be anxious to leave their bedroom fearing domestic abuse.

The charity is always prepared to be there for children and young people when they need us the most, especially when they feel they have nowhere else to turn.

For this reason we have launched two exciting campaigns to help parents get ready for the festive season, whilst helping struggling children everywhere.

Almost 90% of our income comes through donations and this funds services such as the NSPCC helpline and our Childline service too. Without those donations, it would not be possible to do our vital work and continue to be there for children and young people.

For creative people or those that want to try something a little different, the NSPCC Big Wreath Make is a way of learning a new skill, making a beautiful front door decoration and a new and exciting way to fundraise for the charity.

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The event is officially taking place in November and encourages group activity. After signing up fundraisers will receive a how-to guide, both suitable for newbies or seasoned wreath makers alike.

From there, simply set a time, date and place to do a wreath making workshop with family and/or friends and ask them to pay a donation for attending.

The guide offers techniques on creating traditional Christmas wreaths, as well as foraged or pompom varieties too. To find out more and to sign up please visit: www.nspcc.org.uk/support-us/events-fundraising/the-big-wreath-make/

Many parents look forward to the magic of Christmas Day as their children eagerly open presents from Santa and there’s an opportunity to cast that spell early with an NSPCC Letter from Santa.

It’s official, Santa’s workshop is officially open and parents can bring some much-needed sparkle to their little one’s Christmas by with a Letter from Santa. simply logging onto the website, choosing a template letter, adding in some details, such as the child’s favourite hobby or their top achievement, then making a donation to the NSPCC.

The personalised letter will arrive direct to the chosen child’s doorstep from the North Pole and will include their name, age, what they want for Christmas and a special P.S message, creating some well-deserved early excitement for the big day.

There are eight festive designs to choose from and the letters are to available in English or Welsh. To receive the letter in time for Christmas all orders must be received before 14th December 2021. For more information please visit: www.nspcc.org.uk/santa

At the NSPCC and Childline, we know that growing up isn’t easy, especially after the last two years. We all know children can be strong and adaptable but stress and outside pressures can really take a toll and no child should have to cope alone.

Children aren’t coping, they’re dealing with pressures no child should be facing and that’s why mental health still remains our top concern.

Supporting these Christmas-themed activities also means Childline is supported. It costs £30,000 a day to run Childline and our trained counsellors ensure that whatever difficulties a child may face, big or small, they’re heard, they know we’re here and most importantly they’re not alone.

If a child or young person needs to speak to us they can call Childline for free and in confidence on 0800 1111 or log on to www.childline.org.uk and use our one to one chat service to speak to a counsellor or use our message boards, where they can speak to likeminded peers.

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