Christmas countdown starts now as Renfrewshire Toy Bank appeal launched

Everyone is being urged to start their Christmas shopping early to make sure no child misses out this year.

Renfrewshire Christmas Toy Bank is taking extra steps to make sure donations are quarantined before being handed out.

It means the process could take up to nine days before community groups, charities and social workers start to receive the gifts to give to children who may otherwise go without.

They’re asking people to please consider buying toys or donating money soon as they predict they could have almost 4,000 referrals this year.

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Renfrew mum Lauren Roy-Sutherland, who started the group three years ago, said: “All donations will be disinfected by us and then sealed, ready to go to the referrals.

“They’ll be put in a separate unit untouched for three days and will be delivered by one person to eliminate any risk.

“It could take an extra nine days, so everything is going to take a bit longer this year.

“We’ve got even more drop-off points this year. All the Renfrewshire libraries are on board, which is a brilliant resource. I’m ecstatic to have them on board as they’re in so many areas.

“We know there may be more restrictions put in place for people to stay local, so this will really help.

“We would also love more cash donations as well, either through our bank account or PayPal.

“We’ve had some already which has allowed us to bulk buy a bit more and it means we can keep going, even if there is a further lockdown.”

Last year, Renfrewshire Christmas Toy Bank had 1,500 referrals.

Sadly, this year, Lauren thinks it could be their busiest ever with up to 4,000 children needing a bit of extra festive cheer.

A team of 12 trusted driver volunteers are on hand to collect and deliver the presents and Lauren said she’s had lots of people offering to volunteer as well.

“Unfortunately, we won’t be able to take everyone on because of social distancing inside the unit,” she said.

“It’s the most we’ve ever had volunteering to help and it’s wonderful to have that support.”

As well as all Renfrewshire libraries, you can donate brand new toys and gifts to Gantry Paisley, Brew Paisley, Comicrazy Cafe, C Allan & Son Accountancy Services, Morrisons at Anchor Mills, White Cart Company, The Old Swan, Cafe Fairfull, Cardosi’s Espresso Bar, The Barber and Jacks at Brodie Park.

Davidson’s Bar, Sprinkles and Ferry Nice Food, in Renfrew, also have donation points, along with Jim’s Food and Wine, in Elderslie, Key Store in Corseford and Houston village paper shop. Tesco Linwood and Tesco Renfrew have also signed up.

Suggestions for gift ideas include LOL dolls, arts and crafts, Lego, baby toys, makeup, perfume/after shave and footballs. All donations must be new.

To find out more, visit or email

To donate via PayPal, go to or transfer directly to the bank account with the name: The Renfrewshire Christmas Toy Bank, sort code 80-22-60, account number 19679963.

Daily Record – Paisley