The Dandenong Ranges Emergency Relief Service has once again kicked off its Christmas appeal with locals urged to give to those in need this holiday season.
DRERS CEO Tania Bevan said clients with children who live in the area are able to register with the charity to receive toys and other gifts for their children.
“Some of these families would have to decide between buying gifts and paying rent, bills or buying food,” Ms Bevan said.
“We are seeking donations of gifts suitable for children aged 0 to 17 years of age, especially older children, as we receive less gifts for the older children.
“The gifts do not have to be wrapped, as we display them for the parents/caregivers to choose from.”
Donations of Christmas food, including Christmas cake, puddings, mince tarts, chocolates, nuts and anything else that people may enjoy during the festive season are also encouraged, Ms Bevan said.
“With the cost of regular food being a challenge, our clients cannot afford festive foods,“ she said.
“Without the community helping us by donating, this event would not happen.
Ms Bevan said the organisation is “so grateful“ to everyone who has donated in the past, and to those who will donate this year.
“The gifts have a huge impact on the families, and these families need a boost, because if they are a client of our service, then they are already facing financial challenges,“ she said.
“When community members donate to this appeal, they can rest assured that they are helping many people who are struggling to have some happiness at Christmas.”
Those able to donate will be able to do so by visiting DRERS’ Christmas tree at Belgrave Library, which is located at Reynolds Lane in Belgrave.
Gifts and hampers donated will be given away from Monday 18 December.