What has big ears, a twitchy nose and is loved and adored by a small person? A Sylvanian Family rabbit to the average adult human looks like a small hard plastic rabbit covered in a velvet material – it stands, motionless on two feet. However, to the 5-year-old girl who received not only one rabbit but also a whole family of rabbits, this was her world over Christmas. A world she could escape into, make up stories and create imaginary lives.
Lily* was one of the children who was helped by Wave 105 Mission Christmas. Identified by her school as a family in need of support, Lily and her dad had been through a rough time and were struggling financially. Dad as a single parent was trying to make ends meet by juggling work and looking after his daughter. They only just had enough money for basic needs – food and a roof over their head but certainly not enough for presents. Lily’s school contacted us and asked if we would add them to our list of families to help. Her teacher mentioned that all Lily wanted this Christmas was a Sylvanian Family animal and her dad had been scouring charity shops to find one but to no avail.
Every day during December, an army of volunteers in Chandlers Ford were counting and sorting through the mountain of donated presents. Every day they checked for specifically requested toys but no luck for Lily. Then one morning towards the end of Mission Christmas, a van-load of presents was delivered from Sainsbury’s and in the midst of the trains, cars, dolls, teddies, books and Lego was a Sylvanian rabbit family and a house for them to live in. Lily’s teacher collected and gave them to her dad. Lily was able to play with her little family over Christmas and throughout the following year.
This would not have happened without the generosity of individuals and companies who donate every year to Mission Christmas. Over 93,000 children and young people live in poverty in the south (SO, PO and BH postcodes)** which means these children do not eat a hot meal on a daily basis, have no central heating in their homes and do not own a full uniform to wear to school.
During our annual Mission Christmas campaign, Wave 105 Cash for Kids asks the public to donate new and unwrapped gifts to help these disadvantaged youngsters, so they will have something to open on Christmas Day.
Wave 105 Cash for Kids Charity Manager said:
Please help us again this year to support the most vulnerable children and families in the south. This is our community, helping our local children to have a Happy Christmas. You can make a positive difference to a young person’s life.
For more information visit: www.wave105.com/mission
*name changed to protect identity