A Sunderland nightclub opened its doors to host an afternoon of fun and games for some very special guests.
More than 400 children, all with disabilities, life-limiting illness or from disadvantaged backgrounds, were treated to a VIP afternoon on Sunday at Illusions Nightclub in Holmeside.
Santa’s Big Christmas Party is organised by Wearside charity Hope 4 Kidz, which has teamed up with the Echo for the annual Toy Appeal.
The party is an opportunity for the children and their families to feel special and forget their troubles.
Viv Watts, of Hope 4 Kidz, said:“It is fantastic to see the children and their families enjoy their time at Santa’s Christmas party because it gives them a chance to escape the stresses and strains of their everyday life and have fun with other youngsters in a similar situation.
“We are also extremly grateful to Michael and Sharon Downey of Illusions Club for sponsoring the party, by donating the use of the club, providing the staff and the DJ.”
At the party children were entertained by the Super Heroes and were able to get to get up close and play with rabbits, foxes, meerkat owls, snakes and a skunk thanks to Saviours Sanctuary.
There were lots of party games, bouncy castle, face painters, balloon artist, buffet and, of course, the chance to meet Santa.
The Toy Appeal too has got off to a great start with gifts flooding in.Trolley loads of presents have already been collected from Tesco in The Bridges and and the Sainsbury’s stores in Washington and Sainsbury.
If you would like to make a donation, gifts can be left at our designated drop off points: Tesco in The Bridges; Morrisons, Seaburn; Morrisons, Doxford Park; Sainsbury’s, Wessington Way; Sainsbury’s, Silksworth; Sainsbury’s, Washington, Sainsbury’s, Fulwell; Virgin Money, Fawcett Street, Virgin Money, The Bridges; Hays Travel, Holmside; Santander, Wilkinsons and the Nationwide in Market Square.
Gifts must be new and left unwrapped.
The last day for donations is Monday, December 18.