Families feeling the pinch for post-Covid Christmas

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More people are feeling the pinch this Christmas in the wake of Covid-19 disruptions, but a Nelson charity is ready to make a difference.

Fifeshire Foundation manager Leanne Churchill said the growth in demand for its Big Give Christmas gift packages had been “quite significant”.

“We had over 500 nominations a week before the cut-off.”

The foundation is now about halfway through preparing 550 packages of food and gifts for families in need of a helping hand this Christmas.

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“People are well aware that people are struggling. Christmas is just a cost that people aren’t able to afford,” Churchill said.

She said the changing attitudes towards community support could also be having an effect.

Fifeshire Foundation manager Leanne Churchill, with trustees Sally Hetzel and Nicola Fleitas, holding up some of the care packages prepared by Fifeshire for the Big Give.

MARTIN DE RUYTER/STUFF

Fifeshire Foundation manager Leanne Churchill, with trustees Sally Hetzel and Nicola Fleitas, holding up some of the care packages prepared by Fifeshire for the Big Give.

“With all the community collective feeling, people are actually reaching out, now people who have may have been feeling it before but didn’t reach out now feel more comfortable with it.”

Not only were more people reaching out for help, Churchill said another sign of difficult times was the drop in individual donations of food and gifts.

Churchill and trustee Ruth Easther with some of the 500 food and gift bags.

Martin De Ruyter/Stuff

Churchill and trustee Ruth Easther with some of the 500 food and gift bags.

“We have noticed a little bit of a reduction in gift and food donations. Even people that normally would have a bit extra maybe don’t this time around. Luckily, businesses are stepping up.

“We’ve actually had a lot of businesses expressing more interest, businesses have been donating rather than having their Christmas dos or bonuses, a lot have been donating instead.”



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