Posted: 28 November 2014

What your Christmas gift means to the young people I work with

This Christmas we launched alternative gifts that allow you to give a vulnerable child a day out, a Christmas party or a Christmas present on behalf of a friend or loved one. 

Please read Jo’s story of how these gifts can make a young person’s Christmas much brighter.

At Christmas time, young people need us even more

My colleagues and I here in Nottingham work all year round with children and young people, giving them the care and support they urgently need. At Christmas time, they often need us even more. 

For most of us Christmas is a time for celebration, happiness and fun – three things that the children I work with invariably miss out on. My staff and I work to get to the root of the problem and find long-term solutions for these young people. 

These alternative gifts are important because making a child smile and feeling wanted – something a small gift or a Christmas party can do – is important. 

Some of the children we work with won’t have a Christmas tree this year and won’t be getting any presents. Their Christmas will be a far cry from the perfect Christmas we imagine at this time of year.

We do what we can to ensure they celebrate Christmas too. Nothing extravagant, nothing over the top – just a small gift or a trip to the pantomime. We are there for these children all year round but at this special time of year they deserve something extra.

Please have a look at our alternative gifts and help a young person have a happier Christmas.

Thank you.


Buy an alternative Christmas gift

Visit our shop to order an alternative Christmas gift.

By Joanna Manning - Programme staff

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As a volunteer, I once helped take a group of kids to the panto. Most of them were refugees, and had no idea what to expect. And they all absolutely loved it! Screaming with laughter, ice creams in the interval - whatever these kids had seen, or were going back to, The Children's Society gave them an afternoon of total, joyous abandon that they will always remember. This is why I'm buying an 'alternative gift' this year.


Thank you very much for sharing your story and for buying one of our alternative gifts.

We loved reading your story. And you're right, that's exactly the idea behind the alternative gifts - we hope that each brings the 'total, joyous abandon' you described so well to the young people who receive them.

Again, thank you, and merry Christmas.


Why not have similiar gifts available all year round as people ask for them for them as alternative birthday gifts. I know I would.

Hi Jay,
What a great idea. I've passed it along to our fundraising team.
Thank you,