During the time of Christmas, many people are not able to fully enjoy the festivities. This could be due to the fact the individual is worried about paying the electricity bills, or how they are going to provide food for their household. For a lot of the 65 million people living in the UK, buying presents for their family and friends is a struggle due to their financial situation. Several charities and food banks try to bring awareness to this problem as well as providing as much help as they can. An example of this would be the Giving Tree at Bluewater which has been a reoccurring event for the past few years.

The Giving Tree is a large Christmas tree that is placed in the Bluewater shopping centre. However, unlike the average Christmas tree which is adorned with baubles and fairy lights, it is decorated with tags that contain the names of children and their ages. The general procedure if you want to participate includes going to the tree and choosing one of these tags. Next, you are required to purchase a gift you think is appropriate taking into consideration the age and gender of the named person on the tag and deliver the gift, unwrapped, under the Giving Tree. Where the tree is placed encourages people to take part due to its accessible location and the fact that shoppers can easily browse for the gift while going about their own daily tasks. Schools can also participate and DGGS has partaken for the past few years. I had the opportunity to ask students about their opinions on this event, which is referred to in the school as 'Toys for the Tree'.

"Toys for the tree is a great idea because it allows girls and boys of any age to have a special present waiting for them under the Christmas tree," said Kirsten, a student in year 10.

"I like how we have an opportunity to give to others, it keeps us humble as the school reminds us to look out for everyone in our community," stated Dami the school's 100m runner.

"It puts a smile on a child's face, it makes their Christmas," commented Sajana who is in the house Ightam.

So if you are wondering about how you could be a better person for 2018, more charitable or kind, make sure to participate next Christmas and spread awareness.

Princess Nwafor

Dartford Grammar School for Girls