Want to be a Secret Santa?
Buy a gift or donate so local charities can make Christmas special for those they support.
The week of 15th November sees the launch of Connect Reading’s Giving Tree – an opportunity for the wonderful people of Reading to show their generosity by buying a gift for someone supported by a local charity this Christmas.
Last year, thanks to the incredible generosity of people and businesses in Reading and the hard work of the team who took the project online, over 1,500 gifts were given through 16 local charities. This year, we’re going even bigger!
For some people, a gift from the annual appeal, which is now in its 25th year, may be the only present they have to open on Christmas Day.
One of the charities involved last year sent this message:
‘Absolutely overwhelming, the generosity of all, including the amazing support and organisation from the Connect Reading team!
Such a lovely gesture which really helps to bring a smile. It lets people know that they are seen and thought of and that can mean everything!’
Lorraine Briffitt, CEO of Connect Reading, the charity that organises The Giving Tree appeal said:
‘This time of year can be really difficult for a lot of people – in particular this year with the impact of the pandemic and cuts to Universal Credit there are many families who will be struggling day-to-day, let alone at Christmas time.
We live in an incredible town. The people of Reading always make us proud with their thoughtfulness and generosity and we’re so pleased this year to be able to give them both online and physical opportunities to donate to The Giving Tree.
If you‘d like to get involved but haven’t aren’t able to get to The Oracle you can still buy a gift online via givey.com/connectreadingthegivingtree2021
Your gifts can really make the difference to someone’s Christmas. Please get involved and share the project so others can too!’
Local businesses (who are members of Connect Reading) will also be supporting the appeal by hosting trees at their offices for their employees and visitors or sending out emails to those working at home to invite them to donate – these are:
Nylon Hair Artists
Novotel Reading Centre Hotel
The Curious Lounge
Broad Street Mall
Holy Brook Associates
20 local charities and organisations involved this year will be distributing gifts:
ABC to Read
Berkshire Women’s Aid
Brighter Futures for Children
Fifi’s Vision C.I.C.
Parenting Special Children
Reading Association for the Blind
Reading Family Aid
Royal Berkshire Hospital
Shift Youth & Community
How to get involved:
- Gift tags which have requests from the charities are available on Giving Trees in The Oracle shopping centre near the information desk.
- If you would like to get involved, you can choose a gift tag, buy a gift and then simply return the gift UNWRAPPED to the information desk at The Oracle by 15th December.
- The gifts are then sorted out ready for the charity partners to pick up and distribute to those they support.
- OR, if you would like to donate online then funds will be used to buy gifts which go directly to a charity. Head to Givey by clicking the button below! And do share with your colleagues and friends so they can get involved too!
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