A total of 400 activity packs were distributed before December 25 by staff at the official charity arm of Newcastle United, giving children gift bags including Magpies pens, pencils, notepad and football or mixed sports activity set, a Disney craft box or Marvel superhero puzzle book.
Gifts were also given to 100 schoolchildren supported by the Foundation in Berwick, 100 pupils at schools in North Tyneside, 100 children in Newcastle’s West End through the West End Schools’ Trust and 50 youngsters in Newcastle’s East End through the NEAT Academy Trust.
Newcastle United’s mascot, Monty Magpie, also helped to spread a little extra Christmas cheer by surprising schoolchildren in class before handing out the activity packs with Foundation staff.
Steve Beharall, head of Newcastle United Foundation, said: “It has been another challenging year for younger generations in communities across the North East with many facing disruption to their schooling, limited opportunities to socialise safely or to visit relatives they may have been missing for a long time.
“Young people and particularly those who may come from disadvantaged backgrounds deserve to spend their Christmas holiday having fun and we hope these gifts go some way to making this year a memorable one for the right reasons.”
Teri Bayliss, director of Newcastle Hospitals Charity, home to the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation and the Great North Children’s Hospital Foundation, said: “Hospital stays and medical treatment can be very difficult for children and young people and our funding for two support roles at the Great North Children’s Hospital, one for children with cancer and one for children with chronic health conditions, makes a huge difference to families.
“They help maintain and build self-confidence by keeping young patients active, entertained and engaged at a time when they really need additional support and we’re very proud of our partnership with Newcastle United Foundation.”
For more information about the Foundation and its programmes follow Newcastle United Foundation on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.