TOY Appeal organisers Dee and Chris Drake are appealing for donations to help put a smile on children’s faces on Christmas Day.

The couple from Twemlow Green started the appeal in 2013, with the aim of making sure no child in the north west wakes up on Christmas morning without a present to open.

The first year of the appeal they put together 500 toy sacks, and for each of the past two years have been able to provide 5,000 sacks.

The appeal provides each child with a sack containing eight items, including a teddy, books, board game, sport and craft items and a main present such as Lego.

In a normal year 70 per cent of the toys comes from fundraising, the other 30 per cent from toy collections.

Knutsford Guardian:

However because of the coronavirus pandemic the appeal is not accepting toy donations, and is asking for donations through its justgiving page, which will allow it to buy toys via its wholesalers.

“Normally we get 400 people together in December to sort the toys and put the toy sacks together,” said Dee.

“This year we have done a lot of it two months early. We have done 4,000 children’s sacks and have another 1,000 to go.

“Groups of six have been sorting the toys, and last weekend we had 30 people doing it, with masks on, with temperatures checked and social distancing.

“We have quarantined the toys so that when the toy sacks go to the schools, social workers and care homes in December none of those toys will have been touched for two months.

Knutsford Guardian:

“People have been hit economically this year by the pandemic and have tightened their belts, but we will get to the 5,000 as we won’t let the children down and are still appealing for donations.

“We spend £25 on each sack, and can only do this with the public’s generous support.”

The toys are aimed at children up to the age of 17, and the justgiving appeal will remain open until the middle of December.

Anyone who would like to make a donation can visit