FAMILIES and staff at a York refuge have thanked scores of readers of The Press for their kindness in backing our Christmas Toys & Tins Appeal.

Thousands of toys, teddies, tins of food, games and books were donated last month to the appeal, which was run in partnership with Monks Cross’ similar annual Give A Gift Appeal.

The gifts collected went to three charities; the Salvation Army, York Carers Centre and York’s Women’s Aid Refuge, where mothers and their children go to escape from domestic abuse.

On Christmas Day, the donations ensured women staying at the refuge, run by Independent Domestic Abuse Services, had plenty of presents to give to their children.

Now refuge manager Lesley Ann Mcnulty has written to the newspaper and its readers to say: “We would just like to thank you for your thoughfulness and kindness in donating gifts to the women and children in the refuge this Christmas.

“As we all know, Christmas is a time for families and this is a somewhat difficult time for our families, as they have often left their home town and are unab le to see their friends and family.

“Many families come to us with only what they can carry and sometimes with what they stand in, leaving behind precious belongings and toys, usually never to reclaim them.

“So your generous gifts have made a diffrerence to our women and children, and brought a smile to their faces on Christmas Day, also bringing comfort to the mothers who are able only to provide little in the way of gifts in their current situation.”

One of the families also made a card to express their gratitude to The Press and its readers, saying: “Many thanks for the lovely presents. Me and my kids loved them, so kind of you. Bless you.”