Here's how you can donate toys to help Hemel families in need this Christmas

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The Salvation Army appeals for new, unwrapped toys for its Christmas appeal

The Salvation Army is calling on Hemel Hempstead’s community to donate new and unwrapped toys to its Christmas appeal that will support families in need over the festive season.

This might be a really tough Christmas for local families as many have faced job losses and reduced income due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

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The Salvation Army in Hemel Hempstead is expecting the number of people requesting support to be greater this year, and is appealing for the public's help this Christmas.

The Salvation Army appeals for the public's help (C) The Salvation ArmyThe Salvation Army appeals for the public's help (C) The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army appeals for the public's help (C) The Salvation Army

Salvation Army church leader Major Sarah Murray said: “Every year we ask people to donate new toys and gifts to our Christmas present appeal so we can distribute them to families whose children would otherwise not receive a gift.

"This year, we are expecting the number of families we help to rise as a result of the pandemic’s impact on already tight family budgets.”

Sarah said The Hemel Hempstead branch of the church and charity works with schools in the town to identify and said the partnership is very successful.

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She added: “I had an email from a parent who said they were extremely worried about Christmas.

"They were able to spend money on Christmas dinner because we provided them with toys.”

The church on Waterhouse Street will be collecting donations of brand-new, unwrapped toys on Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning from 9.30am to 12pm.

Major David Murray, co-leader said: “By adding an extra present or treat to your shopping list you can remind families facing a tough winter that their community cares.

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"This year our appeal is themed Be A Star, encouraging our community to bring light and joy to families.

"It also reminds us all of that first Christmas, when a star appeared in the sky to bring the shepherds and wise men to Bethlehem to discover new hope in the birth of Jesus.

"By ‘being a star’ and donating to our Christmas appeal, people will shine a light in the dark for people who are struggling and in need at this special time of year.”

The Salvation Army will sort and distribute the gifts to children and families in the area through their networks and via local groups and social services.

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Gifts can include anything from soft and educational toys for the very youngest child, to games, toys, books and accessories for older children.

A church and charity, The Salvation Army expresses its Christian faith by offering friendship, practical help and support to some of the most disadvantaged people in our communities.

To help support The Salvation Army’s year-round work please visit: