Spreading Christmas Smiles
637. Kate Phillips
A dedicated Telford volunteer is bringing festive cheer to people in need in her community.
Kate Phillips is the founder and driving force behind Christmas Smile, an organisation that distributes gifts to lonely and disadvantaged people in the Telford area. Kate realised that many children would not receive a gift at Christmas. She asked her work colleagues for gift donations and Christmas Smile was born.
The organisation now has a network of donation points and collaborates with local organisations to identify worthy recipients. Last year a total of 4000 gifts were given to 700 individuals by an army of volunteers.
Prime Minister Theresa May said:
‘Through your hard work, Christmas Smile is harnessing the goodwill of the local community to provide gifts to those in need. The thousands of gifts you and your volunteers will distribute this year will spread festive cheer to all who receive them.’
“I’m so very excited to receive this award for my work on Christmas Smile. The charity involves a community of wonderful gift givers and volunteers who help to make the magic happen every year and this award is also theirs.
Christmas Smile provides donated gifts to more than 700 vulnerable children, adults and families across the Borough of Telford & Wrekin. Our aim is to bring a little relief for people encountering financial hardship and oftentimes physical or emotional difficulties. More than anything we want to give out smiles at what can be a very lonely or stressful time for many.
I really hope this award increases local community awareness and participation in the charity and inspires others to be a Point of Light within their own communities”.