The Family Appeal has been supporting underprivileged children in Northern Ireland for 40 years by ensuring they have a present to open at Christmas. For the third year running, Translink and U105 continue to support the Family Appeal through their award-winning Stuff A Bus initiative, aiming to secure 20,000 toy donations this year.
Belfast-born Eamonn took time out of his hectic schedule to visit the Salvation Army’s Family Centre in north Belfast. The TV presenter, who grew up near to where the centre is located, spent a day meeting families and hearing how the appeal is making a difference in their lives.
During the visit, Eamonn paid tribute to the Family Appeal and the Stuff A Bus campaign which together aim to provide around 50,000 gifts to underprivileged children in Northern Ireland.
Eamonn said: “It’s made me feel incredibly humble to visit the family centre and see how desperately needed this service is. Christmas is all about children and today I’ve seen young people who through their innocence don’t know what’s going on. They just know they’ll be sad if Santa doesn’t arrive. And this is where we can all play a part by supporting the Family Appeal and Stuff A Bus campaign.
“When you see real people, who have real problems, making the best of terrible situations in their life, thank goodness for the Salvation Army, St Vincent de Paul, Translink and U105 for collaborating together to bring families some extra joy at Christmas.”
The Stuff A Bus campaign needs the support from the public to help stuff a double decker bus with more than 20,000 presents. Purchasing just one extra gift could make a difference to a child’s life on Christmas morning.
Drop off points are located in Translink stations across Northern Ireland and donations can also be left at the Visit Belfast Welcome Centre and the Maldron Hotel in Belfast city centre.
All gifts must be new and unwrapped. Gifts can be left at drop off points until 17 December.
For more information on donation points visit www.translink.co.uk/christmas. Join in the conversation online using #StuffABusNI.
People wishing to apply for support from the Family Appeal must do so by December 14 December.