Volunteers - Kevin Jenkins Toy Appeal 45th Year

Some of the most impressive sights in London can be found in the East.  Canary Wharf, the O2 Arena and the Olympic Stadium to name but a few.  These symbols of hope stand proudly in East London, just minutes from Newham, where, by contrast,  an astonishing 56% of children are living in poverty.  

According to Ambition, Aspire, Achieve, the charity that runs the Kevin Jenkins Toy Appeal, poverty is growing at an alarming rate in Newham, with the number of schools asking for help doubling from fifteen to thirty in the past year.  This is on top of a rise in the amount of requests for help from social services, and further multiple requests to help individual families and cases.

‘With the cost of living crisis and people losing their jobs after Covid these families are relying on charity more than ever’, says Paula Blake, AAA Operations Manager, who explains an understandable downward spiral in contributions is also compounding the issue. ‘In 2022 we are facing a year where, for the exact same reasons people are in poverty, others who usually make the donations to our Charity are not able to contribute as much.’

AAA’s Chief Executive, Jonny Boux stressed how desperate the charity is for help.  'We have a crisis on our hands.  The warehouse is not even half as full as it was last year and yet the number of children in need has rocketed to 3,500.  We have donation drop offs, an Amazon wish list and a Just Giving page.  The Just Giving page alone needs to make £35,000, of which £20,000 will cover the short fall of toys.  There is a greater need, but less supply.’

AAA, now in it’s 45th year of the toy appeal, is supported by Community Links and the Newham Recorder.  Over three hundred volunteers are called upon each year to come to the Quattro warehouse in Stratford and coordinate donated gifts for individual children ranging from birth to sixteen.  Toys, toiletries, tech gadgets, Lego, games, dolls and new baby essentials are delivered and organised into age bands.  From the list of children in need, a volunteer will put thought to what the child might like, based on their age and family set up. Marie, who has been working as a volunteer for as long as she can remember, was helped by AAA founder Kevin Jenkins, who also supported her family.  ‘If it’s an only child, you have to consider that perhaps a game wouldn’t be a good idea as they don’t have brothers or sisters to play the game with.’

Manager Paula outlined the specific shortage of toys lies with what to buy for teenagers. ‘We are in short supply of gifts for teenagers and would love to see more footballs, headphones, games and vouchers. Vouchers are a fantastic gift for a teenager as it allows them the shopping experience many of us take for granted.’  

Volunteers, benefactors and donators will work around the clock up until Christmas to make sure every child feels the festive cheer of the season with gifts they can enjoy.

Quattro Managing Director John Murphy has been helping the charity for twelve years by providing the Quattro warehouse for the volunteers to work in.

’Waking up to a house full of wrapped gifts, a tree, a warm house and a hot meal is something many of us take for granted.  We can never forget and be thankful for such a privilege.  This year we’re calling on everyone in a more fortunate position: all customers, companies, colleagues, friends and families:  Don’t hesitate, donate.  Get behind this charity and give what you can.  Your kindness can change a child’s experience of Christmas forever.' 


Buy from Amazon Wishlist

Donate via Just Giving

Drop off new toys
Terence Brown Arc In The Park hub in Bethell Avenue, Canning Town, from 9am until 5pm on Mondays to Fridays and between 10am and 2pm on Saturdays.

Please, only new toys, no second hand, remember these are Christmas gifts.
No war related toys accepted.

West Ham Players & Volunteers - Kevin Jenkins Toy Appeal

Today, West Ham Football Club sent some players to support the cause, with Will Greenidge, Remy Coddington and Kurt Zouma helping to prepare Christmas stockings for children and drop off some much appreciated West Ham goodies.

West Ham U21 right back, Will Greenidge, 20,  described working with the charity as 'An emotional experience.' 

Will Greenidge

Remy Coddington, 18, West Ham U21 attacking midfielder, added, ‘It hurts when you come and see how it’s actually affecting a child’s Christmas.'

On instructing West Ham players in the role of a charity worker, long term volunteer Candy commented, ‘This is a lot harder than playing football, isn't it lads?’

‘Definitely’, they replied.

Remy - Kevin Jenkins Toy Appeal


Ted, aged 13, was helping out for the day.  He politely refused a goodie bag from the West Ham players.  'I think another child my age should have it', he said.


Kevin Jenkins Toy Appeal

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