SHELL OUT and help make Easter a happy one – that is the plea as a charity aims to bring a smile to the faces of young people.
Hope 4 Kidz has teamed up with the Echo to run this year’s Easter Egg Appeal, which will see hundreds of children across Wearside and County Durham presented with chocolate treats as they deal with the tough situations life has dealt them.
Youngsters whose mothers are being supported by Wearside Women in Need and children being treated at Sunderland Royal are among the many who will benefit from the kindness of donors.
Viv Watts, the charity’s chief executive, said: “The response in the past has been amazing, absolutely amazing and we had 1,899 beneficiaries last year. There’s a real need to do it because a lot of us take it for granted, where there are children who are not in that situation.
“When we hear some of the stories that come through our door, it’s heartbreaking.
“We’re trying to fill that gap and an Easter egg can bring that smile to their face.
“The value of the eggs last year was £3,425, which is really something.”
She added small gifts could also be handed in by those who do not want to donate sweets.
Nestle, John Lewis and Arriva are firms who have said they will be backing the campaign, with drop off points for residents being confirmed at locations across the area.
The Echo’s deputy editor Richard Ord said: “We are delighted to be adding our support to the appeal. It is a really cracking cause and we hope this year’s will be bigger than ever.
“We know the people of Sunderland are very generous.”
The final day for drop-offs will be Monday, April 14, with the eggs and gifts to be distributed in the two days afterwards in the run up to Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
Eggs can be dropped off at Hope 4 Kidz base in Pennywell Business Centre in Portsmouth Road, Pennywell, between 9am and 3pm, Monday to Friday; Morrisons stores at Seaburn and Doxford Park, and Virgin Money, in Fawcett Street.
Any businesses who would like to set up drop off points can contact the charity on 534 7799.