This Christmas, Salford Survivor Project is helping people and families who have been affected by abusive or violent relationships.
The charity was formed by Jane Gregory after her daughters friend, Leanne Mcnuff, was murdered by her ex-boyfriend. Similarities between Gregory’s daughter and her daughters friend began to present themselves, and her daughter was able to split from her abusive partner before she met the same fate.
However, this was not the last time that Jane Gregory would come into contact with the fatal effects of domestic abuse. A woman named Linzi Ashton was murdered by her ex of just a few months. Gregory did not know her but knew many of her friends and family and witnessed the distress this caused.
These events sparked Gregory to create a space where people could find help and support in a non-judgemental environment. Salford Survivor Project has been supporting domestic abuse survivors for several years now and are once again appealing for Christmas toys to be donated to help struggling families this holiday season.
She spoke about why the Christmas appeal is important to her: “My children were my world and Christmas was always a hard time.
“You have to prioritise basic needs over Christmas presents when all you were left with was a bin bag of clothes.”
This year has been typically different for many charities across the nation, and Salford Survivor Project have also felt the effects of Covid-19. The pandemic has raised the profile on domestic abuse and the charity has seen a surge of pressure on their services.
“This year has been difficult as the increase and demand for our services has risen by 400% since lockdown began. What that means is we don’t have the resources to help everyone.”
Many families have split during lockdown and some have even lost jobs, meaning some of these families won’t have a home for Christmas, never mind the funds for gifts.
On any normal year the charity usually receives help from larger partners like Mission for Christmas, but this year everything was put on hold because of the pandemic.
“Normally we get given lots of gifts, but toy shops aren’t open and with local businesses their workers donated, and we would collect before Christmas, but many are furloughed or closed.”
Therefore, the charity is asking members of the public to donate toys, food and clothing for children aged 0-18 years to help a child in need.
If you would like to support Salford Survivor Project in their efforts to give a child in need a Christmas to remember, you can drop off any donations at Specsavers Swinton, The Little Green Deli, and Butterflies Inspired by Angels.