The season of giving

Whilst researching our Christmas gift guides, we were discussing donations and charity in the office. There are so many wonderful charities at the moment, in so many different guises…and it doesn’t necessarily have to include monetary donations (although see my last post here for those, too).

I asked for some recommendations on Instagram of places you can donate food/belongings/gifts and had the most overwhelming response. I have added some below:

Little Village (London)- like a foodbank, but for clothes, toys and equipment for babies up to age 5. their philosophy is: if your friend would be happy to receive it (i.e not stained or broken and in good condition), then they’ll take it, including buggies and cots. Check out the list of items they are in need of and maybe club together for a friend to drop items off at their London locations.

Baby Basics (All over the UK) – working on a referral basis from Health Visitors, they provide good quality baby items to vulnerable mums, like Moses baskets, maternity pads, mum and baby shampoo.

Dogs on The Streets – charity dedicated to the dogs of homeless people (they’re having a party for dogs today with christmas dinner!). Find out your local station and collect blankets and toys, or you can see the Amazon wishlist here.

Give and Make-up (London and Cardiff) – you can donate beauty and make-up products to women in refuge, as well as clothing and toys (again, the philosophy is if you’d be embarrassed to send to a friend, don’t donate).

Caritas Anchor House (London) – helping homeless people and accepting coats, jarred food, deoderants, toothbrushes etc.

Leeds Baby Bank – baby equipment, formula, nappies…and double buggies from newborn are the most requested items.

Socks and Chocs – started by a policeman in Birmingham with the concept of ‘a lot of people doing a little is better than a few people doing a lot’! You can save items like these as well as sleeping bags and find your local homeless shelter to donate to.

Togs For Tots (Dundee) – working similarly to a food bank, they urgently need unopened toiletries for teens, quality books, bedding, nappies, wipes and more.

New Horizon Youth Centre (Euston, London) – a lady who works here emailed to say that items to get people through winter like good quality jumpers and coats are useful, as well as rucksacks for those on the streets to carry their belongings. Plus items like working kettles helping people into rented accommodation etc.

Leeds Cares – working with 7 hospitals across Leeds, their wish is to pass on anything you would give as a gift, and they are particularly pushing for presents for older children (they get sent a lot of toys but would love for children of all ages to receive a gift). Drop off days for gifts are 17th and 18th December.

Bristol Animal Centre – you can donate good quality food (check the accepted brands) as well as unused children’s toys to poorly animals at Christmas. They also accept supermarket vouchers.

CLIC Sargent – they can raise funds for cancer from your used stamps from all your Christmas cards!

Local Food Banks – a lady got in touch from Haringey (my local) saying that tinned food and tampons are particularly useful.

Project Linus – you can knit a blanket for sick and traumatised children.

British Heart Foundation – this is a good one for after Christmas especially, as we get so many new items and throw out the old. They collect old electrical appliances, sofas, tables and beds etc – and they can even collect.

Red Box Project – donate sanitary products to young people who can’t afford them.

Godiva Woman – you can donate new pyjamas and hair bobbles and books with positive stories – message on Instagram for address.

Even items like crackers are lovely items to donate to food banks, as it can spread Christmas cheer on the day.

Also not forgetting that donating your time is an excellent way to give back this Christmas.

And it goes without saying that all of these should be considered year round, too, not just at Christmas – I am going to use this as a useful guide whenever going through a clear out at home!

6 Comments

  1. Thanks for this list – I’ve been looking for a place to donate good quality baby items (my baby is about a month older than yours) and will be dropping some off to Little Village next week. Thanks for the tips!

  2. Absolutely love this post Alex! I would also add WrapUp London who collect donations of coats for those sleeping rough (at the moment you can also donate through J.Crew, who in turn will give you £25 towards a new coat), and warm clothes, scarves, hats, shoes, etc (especially men’s, which they are desperately short of) to Crisis (I’m doing a collection in my building gathering clothes from all my neighbours), and the RSPCA and local animal shelters who get inundated with abandoned pets this time of year and always need old blankets and towels for the animals in their shelters.

    Briony xox

    1. Thank you! I looked at Wrap Up but their last collection was in November….but good to know re: J Crew! So lovely you are doing a building collection, I’ve got some piles in my office to sort through tomorrow! x

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