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Hundreds of presents for vulnerable children through council initiative

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Kind-hearted councillors and council staff have clubbed together to buy nearly 500 presents for care leavers in the borough in a bid to give them a Christmas to remember.

Dudley Council’s Care Leavers team works with young people aged between 16 and 24 who have been looked after at some point since they were 14 or have been in care on or after their 16th birthday.

There are currently 355 young people who are care leavers in the borough.

The Care Leavers team created an Amazon “Christmas Wish List” for staff and councillors to go on and buy presents, from chocolates and sweets to more expensive gadgets and hair straighteners.

So far 488 presents have been bought, with the number still growing every day.

Councillor Ruth Buttery, cabinet member for children and young people, said:

Christmas can be a lonely time for people who have no family.
This is an amazing Christmas initiative for our care leavers which our staff who look after them have brought about.
They have thought outside the box in the midst of a pandemic to make sure that our most vulnerable children have presents to open on Christmas Day.
We’re also looking at how we are going to support them on Christmas Day itself to make sure they are smiling and happy, and not lonely or isolated.
Staffrooms are currently rammed full of presents that have been bought, which is just fantastic to see and a brilliant gesture from all involved.

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