"The hampers have been really well-received. It's not just the families who appreciate them – the staff love giving them out and much consideration was given to making sure they were shared out fairly. Of the ones I took, one girl unpacked it as soon as I got there. The family were delighted! In another two families I know for a fact the adults in the families will habitually skip meals to feed their kids. The hamper will have made a big difference for them. I heard my colleague say that one little girl wrapped it up and put it under the tree." Social Worker (2012)
In 2014 we wanted to reach even more families in South East London and bless them with a Big Red Box. We had an amazing response and received an incredible 1,096 boxes - over 40% more than in 2013.
As a result, hundreds of families and individuals were blessed over Christmas with a box containing a mix of essential items and Christmas treats. The boxes were distributed through partner organisations such as Social Services and local charities.
We are so grateful to everyone who partnered with us, especially the following:
We launched our Christmas hamper project in 2011 and ran it for two years under the title ARMS WIDE OPEN, wanting to express that our arms are wide open to the people around us.
In all, we collected 215 hampers. Whilst the majority were from individuals, families or community groups from within King’s, local schools and businesses also got involved in providing hampers, including Rushey Green, Rathfern and Prendergast Vale Schools. The Association of British Insurers also provided 7 hampers.
The hampers were given to the organisations listed on the left who delivered them to individuals and families for whom life is hard.
One volunteer said last year: "I was so glad that we decided to do this in this way. It made me feel proud to be part of something that is not about shining glory on ourselves and 'bigging ourselves up' as kind and generous but that truly wants to help those in need regardless of the status or thanks that we receive."
So check out the Food List to see how you can get involved this year.
"Just wanted to say thanks again for the hampers. I had the privilege of giving out 8 and they were certainly very well received by people struggling and would have made a big difference to their Christmas. I've heard lots of stories of kids being excited to find the chocs!"Children's Social Worker (2011)
"I gave one to a family who were overwhelmed to have been thought of. They opened it then and there and were especially grateful for the treat items, mince pies and Christmas pudding."Social Worker (2012)
"One box went to a staff member who recently lost her job. She anticipated a Christmas without any goodies and prayed about it with her daughter. The hamper was an answer to that prayer and a testimony of God's provision to her daughter." Language School (2012)