An act of kindness to help one poverty stricken family during Christmas, has blossomed into a successful campaign to help those suffering hardship during the festive period.
Last year Auchmuty and Dovecot Tenants and Residents Association in Glenrothes answered the call to help a family suffering extreme poverty, delivering Christmas presents and food.
That support eventually lead to more than 150 families being given a Christmas they otherwise would not have been able to afford after donations came flooding in from the public.
Now the Auchmuty group has launched a similar campaign calling for donations of children’s toys, clothing, toiletries and food in order to provide a Christmas for families suffering hardship.
“Little did we know when we got the call last year to help a local family that it would mushroom so massively into providing support for so many others,” said Alex Thomson, chairwoman of the Auchmuty group.
“It’s heartwarming to know that despite the high levels of deprivation in this area, that people wanting to help others is still in evidence amongst the local community.”
Donna Hancock, the group’s treasurer added: “Both poor and middle-income parents tell us that their Christmas finances are in worse state than they were last year.
“We have already received a number of calls for help not just with presents but for winter essentials such as waterproof coats and shoes.”
Drop off points have now been set up across the local community including at the Lomond Centre, Warout Primary School, Auchunty Tenant’s flat, and Auchmuty Learning Centre, where food, children’s toys, toiletries and clothing can be handed in.
Families in need of support will then be able to collect items from both the Lomond Centre and the tenant group’s Alexander Road base, on December 23 and 24, where a hot meal will also be provided.
“We’re now asking for those who need support to contact us either at the community flat or via our website and Facebook page where all requests will be dealt with in the strictest confidence,” said Alex.
“It’s terrible to think that there are going to be some families unable to make ends meet that will just be able to afford a Christmas and we need to do something to address that situation.”
The efforts of the group have been commended by Glenrothes MSP Jenny Gilruth.
She said: “The festive season should be a time for special family celebrations. For many parents, though, it means extra pressure on household budgets and becomes a matter of dread and personal deprivation.
“It is heart-warming to know that community groups are trying to help parents keep it special for their children.”