Rosie Byron, a Counselling tutor from Riverside College introduced an Angel Tree before Christmas to encourage staff and students to take a tag from the tree and donate a gift for the Halton and District Women’s Aid Association.
The gifts were all picked up from the College by the refuge a few days before Christmas so they could be sorted in time for Christmas day, ensuring that parents and children staying at the refuge could enjoy a gift on Christmas morning.
Rosie said, “I had the idea for the tree and set it up in the staff room but very quickly other departments within the College heard about it and I was blown away by how generous everyone was. People from all over the College were putting gifts under the tree and the office ended up looking like Santa’s grotto. The response was fantastic and I know that more people want to get involved next year. It definitely made my Christmas.”
Pam Stanners a Project worker at the refuge said, “We were overwhelmed by the generosity of the staff and students from Riverside College, the Angel Tree really made a difference to a lot of people. The College’s contribution ensured that this year every woman and child living in the refuge received gifts on Christmas morning, letting them know that there are people in the community that care. Your loyalty to our project is greatly appreciated, without your help this would otherwise not be possible, on behalf of the women and children living in the refuge we would like to say thank you.”