Give a Gift


Christmas is a time of giving – the chance to share a special day with others.

For some children in Thurrock, however, Christmas can be an uncertain time. Their parents may be unwell or unable to give them the magical Christmas we want for our own families.

Make a child happy this Christmas

Give a Gift is back for a fourth year, promising to give gifts to hundreds of looked-after children and young people across Thurrock this Christmas – but we need your help.

We're placing a Give a Gift tree in Unit 7 of intu Lakeside Shopping Centre – on the ground floor (Level 1) around the corner from Costa Coffee at the House of Fraser end – and giving it some extra special decorations.

The tree will be decorated with over 2,000 stars, each one representing a Thurrock child for whom Christmas can be a difficult time of year. These are children in the care of Thurrock Council, or who need extra help and support from children’s services.

Now you can show that you care too, by giving a gift this Christmas.

Donate a gift

It couldn't be easier to put a smile on a child's face this Christmas.

From Monday 25 November until Sunday 8 December, you can:

  • come along to the #GiveAGift unit and intu Lakeside
  • choose a star from the tree
  • buy a gift for the child you've chosen and bring your gift to the unit
  • write a gift tag wishing the child a Happy Christmas
  • hand the present and tag to a #GiveAGift volunteer who will be looking after the tree

Stars on the tree include the child's age and gender, making it easier for you to choose something nice. Please note that the names on the stars are not the children's real names, we have done this to protect their identities. However the ages and genders are correct. Therefore personalised gifts cannot be accepted.

Our #GiveAGift volunteers will wrap the gift for you and hand deliver it in time for Christmas morning – either in your name or anonymously, if you prefer.

Support the scheme

We are looking for local sponsors to kindly donate important items such as wrapping paper, tape, gift bags and gift tags.

If you are able to provide some of these items or would like more information please contact us.

Communications team


Thank you to intu Lakeside for their generous donation of an empty retail shop for this year's Give a Gift.

No child should go without a present this year

Our 2018 #GiveAGift campaign was named Best Community and Neighbourhood Initiative at the Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE) Awards.

Help us make this year's #GiveAGift even better!

To find out about how you can make a difference by fostering a Thurrock child, go to