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11 Aug 2022

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The Redemptorist Christmas Hamper Appeal swings into action again

The Redemptorist Christmas Hamper Appeal swings into action again

3rd Class pupils from the Model School, along with Fr Derek Meskell and Brother Dermot McDonagh, launching this year’s Redemptorist Christmas Hamper Appeal. Picture: Keith Wiseman

The Redemptorist Christmas Hamper Appeal, originally known as the Poor Campaign, is part of the Perpetual Help Fund based in Mount St Alphonsus, Limerick.

The appeal is a long-standing Limerick institution. It is as synonymous with Christmas in Limerick as Todd’s window and midnight Mass.

The Redemptorist Christmas Hamper Appeal will be 50 years old next year. Much has changed in this time and much, unfortunately, has stayed the same.

A recent CSO report stated that 8% of people in the Midwest struggle with food poverty. The main objective of the Perpetual Help Fund is the alleviation of food poverty. Our motto is “Food on Every Table”.

The Perpetual Help Fund’s largest undertaking is the Redemptorist Christmas Hamper Appeal. Each year 6,000 hampers are provided to families in need in Limerick city and county and surrounding areas. The fund is busy all year around however, providing support to local community organisations.

In particular they work with, Midwest Simon’s Food Bank, the Free Dinners Trust and various local community centres offering community café and meals on wheels options. The work of the Christmas Hamper Appeal begins each July when the hamper committee meet to make initial plans for the coming Christmas.

Part of this planning involves engaging with the community organisations and individuals who help to distribute the Christmas hampers, getting their views of every aspect of the hamper appeal from what foodstuffs to include to delivery options.

Preparations for this year’s hamper distribution are at an advanced stage. Covid restrictions place extra responsibilities on the hamper team. Yet despite the hard work and occasional difficulties, all involved thoroughly enjoy it and find it rewarding and inspiring.

It is an absolute privilege to be the bridge between those keen to see social justice done and those that are so often denied it.

It is truly the spirit of Christmas in action.

The Redemptorist Christmas Hamper Appeal will gratefully accept any donations. You can go to www.RedsHampers.ie and make a donation.

A Drop-In Donation Centre is open at the Redemptorists, Monday to Saturday from 9.30am to 4pm. For further details, call 061 315099.

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