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Heather Browne (left) and Organiser Jill Robertson get gift labels ready. Photo: DAVIDDA HIKATANGATA

Wrappers’ delight

Santa’s helpers assembled to deck the halls with boughs of holly, or in Paeroa, deck the Baptist Church hall with rows of jolly Christmas cheer and gift wrapping for the annual Christmas Toy appeal.
The event draws in support and donations from people, organisations and groups who want to make sure no local children will go without this Christmas.
Organiser Jill Robertson said she was amazed by how “the community has just been so generous”.
“We’ve got 270 kids to give gifts to today, and if you wander around you’ll see each of the piles, some of them get two or three things,” Jill said.

Toys, books, stationery, board games, puzzles, sports equipment and more were spread around the room at various gift wrapping stations, separated into age and gender groups.
The call was put out for appropriate gifts for children from newborns to 12 years old, “but sometimes if there’s families that have got older ones, we’ll try and cater for them”.
Jill acknowledged that while primary school kids are the target, “we don’t like to send anybody away with nothing.”