A Ferndown charity provided over 130 Santa sacks for children in need this Christmas.  

Ferndown Community Support, on Library Road, Ferndown, collected hundreds of toys for its annual Christmas fundraiser, able to create over 130 sacks. 

Given to children up to the age 17, FCS works with schools to provide children, who aren't as fortunate as others, toys and essentials across the festive period. 

Some 40 volunteers helped create the sacks over 640 working hours, with 525 metres of wrapping paper used. 

Hannah Hobbs-Chell, founder of FCS, said: "All our Santa sacks contain toys and games but also useful things such as a hat and a scarf and some form of stationery. 

"We wrap everything and we try to make it really special, even if it's a tube of toothpaste, we'll wrap it." 

Hannah said that 2023 has been the biggest year for the Santa sacks due to an increase in demand. 

Due to the cost of living and other current factors, she believes that the work the charity does is becoming more important as more families increasingly rely on extra help. 

She said: "This winter is harder than last financially, the hold-up with benefits and inflationary pressures, the problems in that system are real and people get stuck in the middle. 

"There are plenty of people working in good, honest jobs that still can't make ends meet and that's not their fault."

FCS works to ensure that deprived children can still have a Christmas to remember, beginning planning in October. 

The event is a mammoth task and one that Hannah is immensely grateful can happen due to the support the charity receives. 

She said: "A massive thank you to anyone that helped, it's not just a present, it's a sense of belonging and the fact that someone cares enough to help and share. 

"It's the not feeling different and having something opposed to nothing and a chance to be part of a celebration we can sometimes take for granted.

"A set of colouring pencils, a hat and a scarf might seem little but for that person it might mean they can do their homework or go to school and not be cold."