At BCM Christmas began in September when the ToyLink team moved into the Clock Tower to organise the wrapping room and sort donated gifts. They needed to be ready for a mammoth operation that involved hundreds of volunteers collecting, selecting, wrapping and delivering presents to, this year, 1,138 Birmingham families with a total of 2,838 children.
Just before Christmas BBC Midlands Today reported on the project, interviewing Austin who has received gifts for his five children since his wife died ten years ago.
Austin talked about how he would feel he had let down his children.
“I couldn’t afford many presents. Without those charities giving us presents, they would’ve only had a few little ones. You’ve got to get on with it at the end of the day. They’re my children. I couldn’t let them go anywhere else, so I’ll do my best.”
Thank you to everyone who has given toys, money, time and energy to help families like Austin’s under strain this Christmas.
Every year PTV Group donates the use of its Route Optimiser software, saving BCM countless man-hours in routing deliveries across the city. Stacey from PTV Group said:
“We are extremely proud to be associated with the Mission and the fantastic work you guys are doing there.”
ToyLink isn’t the end of the BCM Christmas story. In December staff and volunteers across all departments brought food, friendship and the great news of Jesus’ birth to thousands.
“The assembly was great, informative and well linked to concepts surrounding light and darkness that students of all beliefs can relate to. It was very helpful to explain to students how important it is to try and think about giving rather than just receiving.” Teacher at Birmingham Academy
The Children’s Team were also busy taking their ‘Christmas Special’ assemblies into primary schools.
There was a slap-up turkey dinner and hearty carol singing at the Care Centre’s Christmas meal. Clients at ElderLink got crafty with baubles, tinsel, holly and ivy to create glitzy table decorations.