THE Gazette’s Christmas campaign to help needy children carried on giving over Easter.
The paper teamed up with Blackpool Council for the Give a little, Help a Lot campaign over the festive period to ensure local youngsters got a gift however much their families were struggling in tough economic times.
Thanks to the generosity of local residents, businesses, churches and voluntary organisations, more than 1,000 children received gifts and vouchers totalling a staggering £40,000.
But in spite of the cash collectors rushing to get all the donations in on time, there was still some left over – just enough that bosses could help the needy again at Easter.
Coun Fred Jackson, who organised the campaign at Blackpool Council, said: “We were overwhelmed by the generosity of local residents and businesses for the Give a Little campaign at Christmas.
“There are so many families who are struggling to make ends meet in Blackpool so it’s heart-warming to see amount of people who found the time to donate or buy a gift.
“But donations were still coming in after we had distributed all the gifts, leaving us with £3,300 unspent.
“That money has now been split between the Salvation Army, Ladies Sick Poor Association and the homeless charity Streetlife.
“They are going to use the money to help families in need this Easter.
“It’s amazing that we’ve been able to help so many people and the campaign can continue in this way.
“People can be assured that their kindness is still helping to put a smile of the faces of young people this Easter.”
Major Ian Harris, from the Salvation Army, said working together had meant a better Easter for some of the resort’s neediest people.
He added: “This money will help us to provide the vulnerable and homeless people who come to the Salvation Army for food. There’s more need than ever at the moment with the current economic climate.
“This campaign shows the value of everyone working together.”