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University of York launch Xmas gift campaign

The scheme provides stockings for care-leavers and estranged students at the university

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Image Credit: Annie Watson

Christmas stockings will be given to care-leavers and estranged students at the University this December, as part of an appeal organised by the Widening Participation team.

The project is run in order to give all students at the university the opportunity to receive gifts, and is expected to give out around 100 stockings.

The scheme is funded by a YUStart appeal, and has a target of £3,000 to raise. Each stocking contains gifts to around the value of £30, with any extra money being raised going into additional presents. In previous years, the hampers have included gift cards for York businesses, and donations from John Lewis, Nestle and the Islamic Art Circle. Students who previously received the stockings recognised the way it made Christmas feel “that little more special” during a difficult period.

Fran Hornsby, the contact for Care Experienced and Estranged Students at the University, runs the campaign, and stressed the importance of the scheme – “it lets them know that we value them, that they matter and that we care”. She recognised that Christmas can be an isolating time for those without families, and the stocking scheme is one of the various ways that the university offer support to care leavers and estranged students.

In recent years, the University have given various levels of support to care leavers, including boosting financial support and providing free accommodation throughout their degree. The Christmas stocking scheme is another way in which the team aim to support those students.

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