The Cash for Kids Mission Christmas appeal (delivered in the South Ribble area by Rock FM) has supported families working with Key Unlocking Futures for years, and more recently, our Progress Futures' customers.

'1 in 3 children will be living in poverty across the UK this Christmas'

It's thanks to Cash for Kids and Rock FM that many of our families (supported by both the Group and Key Unlocking Futures) have benefitted from the Mission Christmas appeal, and the reason that the children and young people that we are working with have woken up to a present to unwrap on Christmas morning when otherwise they may not have had any.

Gill Lawrence, Senior Family Support Worker at Key, explains more: "Over the years, we've identified beneficiaries for the Rock FM Cash for Kids Mission Christmas appeal through our normal day-to-day work at Key.

"There have been the families who are vulnerable, living in poverty or suffering hardship of many kinds. There have been the children fleeing their homes and families due to domestic violence, children and young people whose parents or carers are unable to work for a number of different reasons, children who are young carers, and children and young people with their own mental health problems or those who are trying to help a family member with mental health issues."

Gill continues, "Each year, I coordinate our application to the appeal and work out the number of gifts we neede for the most in-need families we are working with, as well as the children and young people using The Base Community Centre in Leyland.

"It is usually Dave Nuttall at Key who picks up the presents. Then our colleagues from Key and the Group distribute them according to need and the families they have on their caseloads at that time. 

"We've helped around 50 families each year for five years. It's been a life-changing and life-saving appeal for our families and we can't thank Cash for Kids, Rock FM and our wonderful Key and Progress Housing Group colleagues enough for helping make sure that the children we support all have a present to open at Christmas."

Katie Hockley, Progress Futures Officer at Progress Housing Group adds, "Last year was the first year we've applied for help for our customers from Rock FM's Cash For Kids Mission Christmas appeal and it made such a huge difference to some of the parents we support.

"The main aim of Progress Futures is to help adults and young people into employment, education or training, but much of our time is also spent supporting the family and working in partnership with other agencies to overcome the barriers to employment or training, which often involves financial difficulties and childcare arrangements.

"Last year, Mission Christmas was a godsend for the families we support and we had many happy tears shed when we dropped round the donations, given so generously by members of the public and coordinated by Cash for Kids. This year, the appeal will help 13 of our families with 29 children receiving gifts for Christmas that they wouldn't have had otherwise - a massive thank you to everyone involved."

 Mission Christmas Futures And Key

Above left: David Nuttall from Key Unlocking Futures picking up the gifts from Rock FM in 2019. 

Above right: The Progress Futures Team, also in 2019, before distributing the Cash for Kids Mission Christmas gifts to their families.

Cash for Kids and our Community Investment Fund

In addition to Cash for Kids and Mission Christmas helping our families, we are delighted to have been able to support the charity in return! Our Community Investment Fund has provided a grant of £3,000 to the Mission Christmas appeal to help children in our local communities this Christmas, and £500 to Cash for Kids, to fund their incredible projects for children, young people and families outside of Christmas-time.

Our Community Investment Fund was set up over 10 years ago to invest in projects and activities that improve our communities. You can find out more about our Community Investment Fund on our website here.

Find out more about the annual Cash for Kids Mission Christmas appeal. For the South Ribble area, visit the Rock FM Cash for Kids Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/rockfmscashforkids/.

We have provided a grant for £3,000 for Mission Christmas from the Community Investment Fund.  This is in addition to the £500 for Cash for Kids given to fund projects outside of Christmas.