ADOPT-A-FAMILY: APN Australian Regional Media CEO Neil Monaghan and rugby league legend Shane Webcke are encouraging us to give to those in need this Christmas.
ADOPT-A-FAMILY: APN Australian Regional Media CEO Neil Monaghan and rugby league legend Shane Webcke are encouraging us to give to those in need this Christmas. Kevin Farmer

Give Christmas joy to a local family

WITH just 48 of the 120 local families nominated for the Adopt-a-Family program still on the list, charities are asking the community to get on board.

The program allows people to purchase Christmas gifts for Coffs Coast families who are doing it tough.

Four charities - St Vincent de Paul, Lifehouse Care, Lifeline and the Salvation Army - have nominated local families and many have already been adopted by people in the community.

Individuals, families, businesses and schools can choose a family from the list, and donate gifts including toys, non-perishable food items and money for fresh food vouchers.

Diane Walters of the Coffs Harbour Salvation Army Welfare Office said the gift of giving went both ways at Christmas.

"It's a two-way street because I think it's a natural impulse for people to give and there's other people in need, so it's a perfect arrangement," Ms Walters said.

"For many families they've got their budgets and they're up to their last cent.

"Then Christmas comes along and it's a huge expense, and not something that people can plan for when you're on a small fixed income."

Lifehouse Care volunteer Debbie Bailey said the program allowed people to give their families a Christmas they couldn't otherwise afford.

"If they're one of the lucky ones to be adopted by the community, when they come in and receive these gifts, the joy on their faces - they're just absolutely over the moon," Ms Bailey said.

For a full list of families to adopt, see this Saturday's edition of the Coffs Coast Advocate.



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