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23 December 2019 | Community

Bringing joy to thousands of kids this Christmas

The tree is up and decorated, the lunch menu is set and nearly all the items on the to-do list are ticked off. The anticipation is building, and it can only mean one thing: Christmas is nearly here.

However, for many families, the joy of the season can be overshadowed by the personal struggles they may be facing.

But thanks to the generosity of our customers and team members, thousands of deserving kids and families around New Zealand will be reminded of the kindness of their fellow Kiwis this year on Christmas morning – 16,000 children to be precise.

Our Be the Joy fundraising and donation campaign has shattered records this year, providing less-fortunate families with gifts and necessities to make the season a little brighter.

For the past month, customers across our store brands were able to donate goods and funds to Women’s Refuge and Variety. Customers were able to purchase a $10 gift tag at any The Warehouse, Warehouse Stationery, Noel Leeming or Torpedo7 store across New Zealand. For every $10 gift tag sold, a toy to the value of $25 was donated to a child in need through Variety. The Be the Joy initiative also enabled customers to drop off unwrapped gifts of their choice for their local Women’s Refuge at The Warehouse stores.

The overwhelming customer support of Be the Joy will mean even more for children in need with The Warehouse Group matching customer donations and donating $165k in vouchers to be equally distributed between Variety and Women’s Refuge for the purchase of essential items.

Additionally, The Warehouse Group is donating $11K worth of vouchers to Radio Lollipop for the purchase of toys for 550 children in hospitals across New Zealand.

“The generosity of Kiwis throughout this campaign has been simply amazing,” says Bronwyn Clayden, The Warehouse Group Community Initiatives Manager. “We are so grateful for their support which has enabled us to donate more than 16,000 gifts to kids who may otherwise go without this Christmas, as well as being able to hand over more than $165k in vouchers to Variety and Women’s Refuge.”

Variety CEO Lorraine Taylor says, “For many New Zealand families Christmas is a time of joy and celebration. However, for many of the families Variety works with Christmas can be a time of struggle, and a stark reminder of the hardship they face every day. Thanks to the amazing support of our Principal Partner, The Warehouse, and their customers, over 7000 Kiwi kids will receive their very own Christmas gift this year. For those children that means they can experience the joy of Christmas just like other Kiwi kids.”

In addition to the vouchers, Women’s Refuge will receive gifts to be distributed to their 68 refuges, from the national in-store collections which were overflowing with donated items.

Women’s Refuge CEO Dr Ang Jury says, “Through the Be the Joy Campaign, we are able to provide Christmas gifts to the tamariki in our care this holiday season, which is no small thing. This act is so much more than a gift, it lets children in our refuges know that they are valued. Through the simple gesture of being given a present, they know that just because they are going through a tough time, it doesn’t mean that they will not have Christmas or that Santa has forgotten about them. We are so grateful to the Warehouse Customers that helped us accomplish this and of course to our wonderful partners The Warehouse Group”.

The campaign will be the gift that keeps giving beyond Christmas as the continued sale of bags which were designed by Trelise Copper, in collaboration with The Warehouse and specifically for the ‘Be the Joy’ initiative, is expected to raise over $150,000. All proceeds will go to Variety.

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