#January Jumpers campaign finds homes for unwanted festive gifts

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Firms across Sunderland have launched a charity drive to recycle unwanted Christmas gifts.

#JanuaryJumpers will see Sunderland Business Group Partners collect unwanted presents from smiley-Santa sweaters to six packs of socks and a good home will be found for them.

Businesses are working with the Salvation Army, but are inviting other charities which support homeless people, the elderly, children and those in sheltered accommodation, to come on board.

Sunderland Business Group chairman, Gary Hutchinson, said: “Part of what makes Sunderland great is how caring and generous our people are. As such, we want to extend Christmas into 2016 with #JanuaryJumpers, which aims to scoop up the gifts that will sit at the back of wardrobes, find their way into the corners of garages and end up in lofts across Wearside and put them to good use.

“Please support this push to help those less fortunate and let’s make sure all those #JanuaryJumpers find their way to people who will appreciate them the most.”

Christine Ritchie, centre manager, of the Salvation Army, said: “The smallest gift can provide the largest benefit and I applaud our city’s businesses for thinking about those less fortunate at this time of year.”

Some of Sunderland Business Group’s founding partners, Gentoo, Sunderland AFC, The Bridges, as well as Creo Communications and Ashmore Consulting will be setting-up drop zones for people to leave gifts.

These will be collected and delivered to The Salvation Army’s Swan Lodge.

To find out where drop zones are, go to: http://sunderlandvibe.com/january-jumpers/