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Best friends make Christmas happen for hundreds of children

A social worker who has seen first hand the impact poverty has on children has teamed up with a friend to support this year’s Winter Toy Appeal. Best friends Cat Taylor, 31, and Jenna Nicholson, 31, from North London, have raised over £3,000 to buy new toys for children in the capital who are experiencing poverty. Cat, who works for adoption services, used to work in child protection in Hackney. She said: “Having a special toy for Christmas means everything - if you’re not a family in poverty faced with a choice of whether to put on the electric or buy gifts, it’s easy to take Christmas for granted. When children go back to school after Christmas and see their friends, they don’t understand why Santa didn’t come to them - that creates stress and upset that stays for a long time. “As a social worker I used to give out presents at Christmas to children in most need and I saw how happy it made them. When I was researching, I came across the Winter Toy Appeal and Jenna and I decided to help.” Each year the Winter Toy Appeal, which is run by the Local Buyers Club, distributes new toys to around 4,000 children experiencing extreme poverty. They’re given out via social workers, schools, children’s centres, hostels, refuges and food banks. Jenna, who works as a fashion buyer for Oasis, added: “Usually when we fundraise we do bake sales and other initiatives but COVID makes that hard. So we are asking everyone we know to donate and people have been so generous. We’re really looking forward to choosing toys with the money we raise. A friend’s little girl who’s three has said she’ll go without some of her presents this year and instead she’s choosing toys for the appeal!”

The Winter Toy Appeal urgently needs more donations - please buy a gift via the gift list or contribute to the Go Fund Me so organisers can choose toys from independents. Visit or, to contribute to Cat and Jenna’s fundraiser, visit

Winter Toy Appeal

The Local Buyers Club is donating £5 to the Toy Appeal for every new member who signs up using the code WINTERTOYAPPEAL.(Membership is £12 a year, Click here to join).

Every year the appeal is supported by Location Location estate agency, who donate generously and help organise. A small army of local supporters also volunteer their time to leaflet and fundraise. If you’d like to help please email

Click here to read more about the appeal.


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