About Bags of Blessings
We are a charity, local to Nottingham, which distributes donated gifts to deprived young people in the Nottingham area.
We put collection boxes in local schools, churches, and businesses, with the request for small, pocket money toys, stationery, books, or items of confectionery. We then sort the donations into age groups, gift wrap each item and put 4 or 5 gifts into a red cotton bag to be distributed to young people aged 0-16 via food banks, homeless and refugee charities or organisations which support disadvantaged children. We regret that we are unable to help individuals without a referral from one of these agencies, a school, or a church group.
In our first year, 2018, just two months after our inaugural meeting, we collected enough donations to make the Christmas of 335 young people a happier time and 2019 saw us distributing toys and gifts to 810 children and teenagers, to bring them a little Christmas joy.
None of this would have been possible without the support of helpers who collected donations, volunteer drivers, two guide groups who spent noisy and happy evenings wrapping, the Mothers Union, who take care of our printing needs, a whole army of supporters at St James Church, Porchester, and The Salvation Army in Sneinton who let us have the free use of a much-needed storage area.
Funding comes from our own fundraising events and support from local councils, plus individual donations and grant-making organisations. We cannot adequately express how grateful we are for all the help we are given.
2020 was to be the year of expansion. We had plans to take out Easter gifts through our usual agencies and also support our local clothing bank with gifts of clothing and school uniforms, but Coronavirus stepped in and halted all our plans. We are still looking for ways to take our services further into Nottingham City and County, not just at Christmas but throughout the year, with targeted campaigns, it just may take a little longer than planned.
In the wake of Covid-19, we anticipate that Christmas 2020 will be one of huge anxiety to many parents and the need for Bags of Blessings will be greater than ever.