A total of 3,000 presents have been donated to children deemed at risk of not getting a gift this Christmas as part of Caerphilly County Borough Council’s annual Operation Santa appeal.
Gifts will be received by more than 700 disadvantaged children, who were nominated by their social workers.
Residents, schools and businesses alike donated the presents to the appeal, which began collecting donations in November.
Cwrt Rawlin Primary School, Plasyfelin Primary, Machen Primary and Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Caerfilli were among the schools to donate gifts to the scheme, alongside a host of businesses, including Creditsafe and ACT Training.
Employees at Caerphilly-based Link Financial donated more than 220 gifts to the appeal, worth around £2,600.
Meanwhile, the council’s cabinet made a donation of £1,100 towards gifts and selection boxes for the appeal.
Chris Robertson, UK CEO of Creditsafe, said the company was “excited” to be taking part in the scheme for the ninth consecutive year.
He said: “This year we have two new offices contributing to this amazing cause – our London and Manchester offices have joined our Caerphilly and Cardiff Bay offices to donate Christmas presents to children in care across Caerphilly County Borough.
“Our staff look forward to helping out the local council in Caerphilly all year, and are thrilled to say we have jointly contributed over 900 gifts this year.
“We are aiming to help as many children as we can in providing each child with a present at the most magical time of the year.”
The council’s cabinet member for social services, Cllr Carl Cuss, said: “Our Operation Santa Appeal would not be successful or even possible without the kindness and generosity of our residents, schools and local businesses.
“I would like to thank everyone for supporting this worthy cause and for giving every child in Caerphilly County Borough the opportunity to celebrate Christmas the way every young person deserves to.”
Meanwhile, a number of food hampers have been donated by Hengoed Primary School, Trinity Fields School, Ysgol Gyfun Cwm Rhymni and Blackwood Comprehensive.
The hampers will go to young people who have recently left the care system.
Council staff took part in a dress-down day on Friday, November 29, with staff donating food to the appeal as part of the event.
Council suppliers and contractors also chipped in with donations, which were shared out to foodbanks in Caerphilly town, Blackwood, Risca and New Tredegar.
Donations were also made to the Caerphilly Churches Night Shelter scheme, which provides rough sleepers with shelter during the winter period.
Cllr Colin Gordon, the council’s cabinet member for corporate services, said: “On behalf of the council, I’d like to thank staff and businesses for their generous contributions to this year’s Christmas appeal.”