Some of the donated toys

Generosity overwhelms police officers after toys donated for Christmas gift appeal

Officers have been overwhelmed by the generosity of residents after piles of toys were received for their annual Christmas gift appeal.

By Stephen Briggs
Wednesday, 29th December 2021, 4:55 am

An appeal from the Fenland Neighbourhood Policing Team asking residents to help them spread some Christmas cheer to local children in need went out last month.

And they were not disappointed by the response, with bags full of gifts, including games, dolls, arts and crafts, toys, and toiletry sets donated.

Inspector Ian Lombardo said: “Despite it having been an extremely tough year for so many people, I have yet again been surprised by the level of generosity and community spirit shown in support of this appeal.

“The appeal first started when I heard a story from a social worker who was working with a family with a four-year-old girl who told them that her mum said Santa wouldn’t be able to come this year.

“No matter the circumstances, no child should go to the tree on Christmas Day and have nothing to open. The amount of support this appeal gets each year tells me the Fenland community feels the same way.

“The volume of donations this year has vastly surpassed my expectations and I want to say a personal thank you to everyone who was able to donate.”

The local policing team joined up with social services to collect the toys and gifts for children across the Fenland district.

Insp Lombardo added: “I always hear such amazing stories from social services about the children who receive these toys and it’s these stories and the sheer scale of the support shown by the community that makes it such a worthwhile event.

“We will never know exactly which child received each donation but one thing I can promise is they will have gone to some of the most vulnerable and deprived children in the area and have made a difference to their Christmas.

“From my team and I, merry Christmas and thank you once again.”

Sally Fairbrass, from children’s social care, added: “I am amazed by the amount and the quality of the Christmas donations this year. I have never seen so many toys and it has been our biggest year so far.

“The generosity of the Fenland community was outstanding and this will mean so many children will have a Christmas they can enjoy and remember. You really have made a difference to many families and I’m proud to be part of this each year.”

Social workers and family workers are now in the process of wrapping the presents and delivering them to families across Fenland, ready for the big day.

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