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Donate a gift this Christmas

By : The Daily Advertiser|Updated: 2011-11-18

GIFT OF GIVING: (From left) Salvation Army representative Ian Shelley, mayoress Di Pascoe, Salvation Army representative Byron Bootes and Wagga K-Mart Wishing Tree co-ordinator Virginia Auld get together to launch the K-Mart Wishing Tree gift appeal yesterday. Picture: Sara Schneider

AUSTRALIA'S largest Christmas gift appeal hit Wagga yesterday with the launch of the K-Mart Wishing Tree.

The charity initiative - a collaboration between K-Mart and the Salvation Army - is collecting presents until Christmas Eve with organisers hoping to exceed last year's record of 1721 donated gifts.

Wishing Tree co-ordinator Virginia Auld said residents could participate by simply placing an item under the in-store tree.

"We accept gifts for everyone of any age - wrapped or unwrapped," she said.

"The gift doesn't have to be from K-Mart - it can be handmade or from another store.

"All people need to do is take a gift tag from the tree and identify what age and gender the most suitable recipient would be.

"Last year we had a huge effort from residents around the Riverina and we are hoping to better that result this year."

Salvation Army representative Byron Bootes said residents should feel as though they are making a difference as donations made in the Riverina will stay local.

"The initiative serves those less fortunate within the region," he said.

"It really is a grassroots campaign to help people."

Mayoress Di Pascoe - who was on hand to help launch the event yesterday - said she hoped Wagga residents would get behind the cause.

"An initiative like this is fantastic," she said.

"Everyone deserves to have a merry Christmas."

Source: The Daily Advertiser