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NZ’s Largest Christmas Gift Appeal Support Call


Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal national spokesperson Sally Ridge at the national campaign launch

MEDIA RELEASE

20 November 2001

New Zealand's largest Christmas gift appeal calls for public support

New Zealand's largest Christmas gift appeal has launched across the country, with an aim to collect more than 15,000 gifts for Kiwi's in need from now until Christmas Eve.

For information on the Wishing Tree® Appeal in your local area call tel (09) 373 3786.

The Kmart Wishing Tree* Appeal has distributed more than 50,000 on gifts to people in need over the past 7 years.

Established by Kmart, the Wishing Tree® Appeal is supported by some of New Zealand's largest welfare organisations - The Salvation Army and Barnardos.

"With thousands of New Zealander's currently living below the poverty line, the need for donations this year is greater than ever before. Each year an increasing number of people need the support of The Salvation Army at Christmas time," Salvation Army spokesperson, Don Oliver, said.

"We are desperate for Christmas gifts and we're calling on people to donate early so our supply does not run short and we can continue to distribute gifts up until Christmas Eve.

"This year we are particularly in need of toys for young children and gifts for adolescent boys aged 10 to 13 years," Mr Oliver said.

The appeal's theme is Every Gift Brings a Smile. It highlights the difference that every gift donated will make to an individual at Christmas.

The Wishing Tree® Appeal was established after a Kmart employee suggested Kmart use its network of stores to help charity groups at Christmas time.

How to participate in the appeal Gift donations

To participate in the appeal simply place a wrapped gift under the Christmas Wishing Tree® located in any Kmart store. Take a gift tag from the tree that identifies the appropriate gender and age of a suitable recipient and place it with your gift.

Gifts do not have to be purchased at Kmart - the stores simply act as co-ordination points, bringing together community resources and welfare groups to distribute gifts.

-ends-

For further information or to arrange a photo opportunity, please contact:

Kim Knight Porter Novelli

09 373 3786


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