Published: 02 Nov 2010

Jennings Motor Group’s Ford, Mazda and SEAT branches across the North East, have kick-started the Salvation Army’s Christmas Appeal by being the first company to donate gifts.

For the twelfth consecutive year, Jennings Motor Group has stepped in to support the Appeal, by using its Ford, branch network which covers Tyneside, Wearside, South Tyneside and Teesside, as drop off points for staff or members of the public who want to donate to the Appeal.

The launch got underway at the Riverside Road dealership, just off Wessington Way in Sunderland, where franchise manager, Norman Shepherd and sales manager, Paul Beadling, donned their Santa hats and presented a number of gifts for young children, teenagers and the elderly to the Salvation Army’s Sunderland representative, Graham Wharton.

Norman Shepherd, franchise manager at the Mazda dealership in Sunderland, said; “We are a very community-focused company and we are once again, absolutely delighted to be assisting the Salvation Army with another Appeal.

“The Salvation Army does an amazing job helping people in the community, not just at Christmas time, but all year round.

“This time of year, is the most difficult and challenging of all, as they have thousands of people they need to assist in order to make their Christmas extra special.”

As in previous years, the Salvation Army will not only be assisting Local Authority Social Services departments, but also many other Charities and Agencies that call upon them to assist with needs this Christmas.

Staff at Jennings is urging its staff, customers and members of the public to support the Appeal, which is running until Friday 17th December, by taking gifts, including new toys for children and gifts for teenagers, gifts for the elderly, non-perishable food or donations to any of its dealerships across the region.

Last year in the North East area, the Appeal assisted over 11,837 people by providing gifts to those less fortunate at Christmas time. This included providing toys for more than 7392 children, gifts for more than 2657 families, in addition to 426 elderly people who also received gifts, 1416 homeless people who received gifts and more than 946 food parcels being distributed.

Major Marion Mountain, divisional community services officer for the Salvation Army, said; “We are delighted with the continued support we receive from Jennings Motor Group and look forward to another successful Appeal for the Salvation Army.

“We are looking for gift donations for all ages, from young children to teenagers and the elderly.”

Jennings branches can be found at Riverside Road in Sunderland; Newcastle Road, South Shields; Eslington Park, Gateshead; Yarm Road, Stockton and Cargo Fleet Lane, Middlesbrough. The group’s service department on Parsons Road in Washington, is also taking part in the Appeal.

If you would like more information about this year’s Appeal, contact The Salvation Army on 0191 2381820.

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