Today we were excited to officially launch our new Charity – Santa’s Black Country Toy Appeal in the presence of all four Black Country Mayors, who kindly attended to hear about our plans for Christmas 2021. The event was held at Resonance Education on the Waterfront, supported by our friends at Black Country Radio.
- Mayor of Dudley – Cllr Anne Millward
- Mayor of Wolverhampton – Cllr Greg Brackenridge
- Mayor of Sandwell – Cllr Mushtaq Hussain
- Mayor of Walsall – Cllr Rose Burley
In addition to running an appeal in Dudley borough, we hope to set up central collection points in the other three Black Country boroughs – Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton and create a network of collection points to support them. The aim is that gifts donated in the four areas, benefit children and young people living below the poverty in that area – donate local and support local.
We were also pleased to welcome some very special guests including Santa, who kindly gave their time to listen to our plans.
- Jayne Waltho and Phil Alliband – our fantabulous volunteer team
- Our brilliant Business Ambassador Brett Harris from Blaze Hair who celebrates a decade of supporting us this year!
- Lee Southerton from Volks Magic and two of his magnificent Santa’s a Gangster supporters, who are committed to making a huge difference every Christmas – Bill Perry and Sid from Sids Paint Shop
- Our wonderful supporters from Black Country Radio – Dave Brownhill, Zyllah Moranne-Brown and Clive Payne
- Shane Birch-Bastock – who has literally saved Christmas by supplying us with a venue to run the central Dudley collection point this year
- Cllr Adam Davies – huge thanks for his ongoing support and introducing us to Shane!
- David McLaren and Bradley Cooper from Quras Digital – who have designed and built our wonderful website for free
- Vicky Rogers and Matt from Halesowen BID who organised a huge collection point generating donations for Halesowen in 2020 and are supporting again this year
- Chris Silcox from the Cottage Kingswinford, who is supporting us this year
- Maren Lilley from DMBC Chief Executives Dept, who organises support from DMBC Staff and Councillors each year
We had delicious Cornish Pasties donated by Darren Bassett – The Cornish Pasty Man – who runs a collection point for us and kindly donated afternoon tea boxes for the Mayors.
There was also delicious cake made by Sally and her lovely team from Lunch on the Run.
Thanks to everyone who has supported us we really appreciate it and let’s smash it again this year!