The Combined Charities Christmas Toy Warehouse is making an early call-out for donations, with the warehouse set to open in Newcastle later this month.
The warehouse, run jointly by Samaritans, the Salvation Army and Wesley Mission, expects to see 1100 families in need, with a total of 3,000 children in the three weeks it is open.
Between now and December 18 the warehouse needs as many toys and gifts as possible.
Sue Williams, spokesperson for the charities, said the earlier the staff at the warehouse receive donated gifts the more prepared they can be.
“Despite the shops already being full of tinsel and decorations, many people aren't in the swing of their Christmas shopping yet,” Sue said.
“But now is the time when we need the most gifts, as we open up the warehouse with only a small number of gifts that were given too late to distribute last Christmas,”
The warehouse offers both large and small gifts for babies all the way up to teenagers and even adults.
“Mostly we see families through the warehouse shopping for children but we also see adults who are choosing a single gift for a loved one or parent, so gifts of all types are accepted,” she said.
She continued by saying that gifts for adults and teenage boys were always in great demand. Gift suggestions for teenage boys include fishing and sporting equipment, footballs, beach towels, skateboards, DVDs, games and electronic items.
The gifts are displayed in the warehouse for families to choose, rather than being given a generic wrapped gift.
“It is much more empowering for people visiting the warehouse to choose their gifts, just like the rest of us doing our shopping at Christmas, rather than being designated a particular item,” she said.
Donations of gifts to stock the warehouse can be made at Giving Trees throughout the region or by contacting the charities directly:
- Samaritans | 4960 7100
- Salvation Army | 4929 2300
- Wesley Mission | 4915 3683
Giving Trees are located at The Greater branches, 1233 ABC Newcastle, Newcastle Permanent branches, Newcastle Newspapers, Onesteel and more.
Families wishing to visit the warehouse must register before Friday, 29 November 2013 by phoning 1800 800 472 between 9am-3pm.
Image | Samaritans' Sue Williams and Howard Mole from The Salvos