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Be A True Secret Santa This Christmas


For release: 2 December 2009

Be A True Secret Santa This Christmas

National survey results show 92% would forgo work Secret Santa gift to donate to Christmas gift appeal

Many companies embrace 'Secret Santa' gifting internally in the lead up to Christmas however the results of a national survey released today, show that most Kiwis would prefer to forgo an anonymous Secret Santa gift from a work colleague and instead donate a gift to a Christmas gift appeal, such as the Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal.

Ninety two percent of those surveyed in the Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal survey* said they would prefer to see the money spent on workplace Secret Santa gifts be spent on a Christmas gift for someone in need, particularly given the current economic climate.

The survey revealed that the average cost of an office Secret Santa gift was $10. Some of the more unusual gifts received by survey respondents included fairy dust, a mouse trap, an onion peeler, a mask and a painted toadstool.

Given the results of the survey, The Salvation Army Public Relations Secretary, Major Robert Ross is urging companies and individuals to become true Secret Santa's for someone less fortunate this Christmas, instead of continuing with traditional Secret Santa gifts, which can be unwanted or considered useless.

"I have seen the difference a $10 gift can make in providing someone with a much appreciated Christmas present. Christmas is all about giving and there are plenty of deserving families who need a little help to enjoy the holiday season.

"By placing a present under a Kmart Wishing Tree you become a true Secret Santa, and help to bring to life the magic of Christmas for a child, teenager or struggling mum and dad who would otherwise miss out," said Major Ross.

The Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal is New Zealand's largest Christmas gift appeal and over the past 14 years has helped more than 202,000 New Zealanders. Last year the Appeal distributed 29,797 gifts. The presents are distributed within the communities they are donated in by The Salvation Army and Barnardos, the official charities of the Wishing Tree Appeal.

To participate in the Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal, simply place a gift (wrapped or unwrapped) underneath the Wishing Tree at any one of Kmart's stores across New Zealand. Gifts do not need to be purchased from Kmart - all gifts will be gratefully received and will go towards helping brighten someone's Christmas.

As an alternative to donating a gift, people can make a cash contribution at any Kmart store register or place spare change in the coin collection boxes located in stores. One hundred percent of cash contributions are converted by Kmart into Kmart gift cards, which are then distributed to people in need by welfare groups, allowing Appeal recipients to choose their own Christmas gift.

The Wishing Tree Appeal runs through to Christmas Eve.


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