Tis the season to be jolly were told, but for many Australians doing it tough, Christmas can be a time of great stress and heartache.
You can help make a local familys Christmas a happier one by joining the annual Share Christmas Gift Appeal, which was launched at Target Country in Lismore on Monday.
All you have to do is buy a gift from Target Country (theyll gift wrap it) and place it under the in-store Christmas tree along with a tag (supplied at the store) stating the age and gender the present suits.
A team of UnitingCare volunteers like Rod Campbell and his wife Sharon then play Santa, collecting and distributing the gifts in time for Christmas Day.
The common perception of a happy family opening gifts around the tree is not the reality for the one in nine Australians who are living in poverty, said Rod. This year we are hoping more people will join in the fun of playing Santa for a child in need, a homeless teenager, a lonely older person or a family in crisis.
Gifts can be donated right up until Friday, December 22.
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