intu Eldon Square and intu Metrocentre have teamed up with Metro Radio’s Cash For Kids Mission Christmas campaign to provide gifts for underprivileged local children for the fifth year in succession.

One in four children living in the UK is classed as living in poverty, and for families in need the prospect of purchasing Christmas presents can be particularly daunting or simply unachievable. The Mission Christmas campaign aims to provide every disadvantaged local child with a present to open on Christmas morning.

Visitors to intu Eldon Square and intu Metrocentre are being encouraged to buy an extra present while doing their Christmas shopping, which they can drop off at the Mission Christmas Giving Box.

intu Eldon Square’s Giving Box can be found outside Thomas Sabo, and at intu Metrocentre toys and gifts can be dropped off at the Giving Box placed just outside House of Fraser.

The boxes will be in place until 19 December, and then the gifts will be wrapped and distributed in time to brighten a child’s Christmas.

Donated gifts should be suitable for children and young people aged 0 to 18 years and need to be new and unwrapped, so that they can be allocated to a child of the appropriate age.

Last year Metro Radio’s Cash for Kids helped secure gifts for over 40,000 north east children who normally wouldn’t receive a Christmas present. This year, the Mission Christmas team hope to increase the number of gifts donated to 47,500.

Clare Cannon, community manager, intu north east, said:

“Every child hopes to wake up to a present on Christmas morning but without campaigns such as Mission Christmas, large numbers of disadvantaged children here in the north east would miss out on the joy of receiving a gift.

“People in the north east are renowned for their generosity, and at this special time of year being able to give something back to the local community is extremely heart-warming.

Last year our generous shoppers donated 800 gifts for the appeal, so this year we’re hoping to reach a target of 1,000 gifts that will certainly help to spread lots of festive cheer on Christmas Day.”