For those of you who follow the Lakeland 50 & 100 on social media, you will be well aware of the funds raised and donated to charity on a daily basis. Our Epic Kidz charity, funded by Lakeland 50 & 100 and Epic Events started as a way to fund children in sport and has now grown into all things community based.
This week, we’re donating to groups who provide free Christmas dinners for the local community, who otherwise would be alone or cannot afford the cost. This service isn’t just for the elderly, it’s increasingly for families and their children.
Last week I spoke to a lady who runs the Salvation Army in Blackpool and we donated £500 towards their costs for Christmas day. The conversation went like this:
“How many have you got this year Tina?”
“More than last year, I think we had 85 last year but we’re expecting way more than 100 this year and there’s more families and children. We have separate rooms so we can cater for everyone and we’re going to get some presents for the children”.
“Wow, well thank god you’re doing it. I’ll sort the cheque and get it sent out to you. Is there anything else we can do? Anything else you need?”
“Some toys would be good and other things for presents. As well as those who come to us on the day, social services have given us a list of local children who won’t get any gifts at all on Christmas day, so we’re planning to buy some ‘Santa sacks’ and put 5 or 6 little gifts in there, so we can distribute them… so they’ve got something to open on Christmas morning”.
“Cool, I can help with that, so how many are we talking?”
“We’re not sure, the initial list from social services is 1,600 children in our vicinity, but it’s likely to be more. But we’re starting with 1,600 sacks”.
I’ll let that sink in for a second….
If you follow our social media pages and you like what we do, then I’m asking you please to return the favour. This is the only time in the whole year that I’ll ask you to reciprocate the charitable donations. There’s over 1600 people in the race this year alone, plus previous and future competitors, so between us, we could make a serious contribution towards those Santa sacks.
When we read about appeals like this, we generally think they’re great ideas, but too commonly we all think that ‘someone’ else will make the donation. The reality is that ‘you’ are the ‘someone’ and every gift that we receive is important. It’s realistic to assume that a 5 year old child may wake up on Christmas morning and the only gift they have to open is the one that you’ve sent. So please don’t believe for one second, that one gift won’t make a difference.
We’re asking you to send 1 gift with a value of no more than £5-15. If you’d like to give more, please donate 2 gifts of smaller value rather than 1 of greater value, so each sack can have 5-6 presents and the children have more gifts to open.
Our suggestions are:
Hats, gloves and scarves
Hot water bottle
Gift vouchers (some of the children are teenagers)
This list is not exclusive in any way, any other toys would be gratefully received and any gifts you’ve got lying around the house, we’ll gladly take them.
How will this work?
We only decided to do this yesterday, so we’re still working through the best plan, but the easiest way is to order one of the above items on Amazon or similar, pay online and put our address as the ‘shipping address’ so it comes direct to us. On Monday 16th December, we’ll hire a van (hopefully a large one) and drive the gifts to Blackpool for the Salvation Army to pack into Santa sacks. You can of course drop them with us if you’re local or post them via the normal routes.
*If your school or workplace would like to get involved, then simply arrange a collection with your colleagues and we’ll come and collect from you in our van or we’ll arrange a Parcelforce collection if you could put them all in a big box! Just contact us for details.
Please do not gift wrap gifts as when they’re sorted, the team need to know the gender and the age of the child for which the gift is appropriate.
The Endurance Store Christmas Appeal
308 Mossy Lea Road
It’ll take you 5 minutes to go into Amazon and pick something from the list above. Don’t ever think that your single gift won’t make a difference, because it will.
Let’s make this happen, please share it with your friends and encourage them to help. We’ll keep you updated with the progress.
Merry Xmas to you all
Marc, Uncle Terry, Jo, Chris, Rob and the Lakeland team x