By Bejay Browne
A LIMASSOL based foundation has launched its annual Christmas programme which gives a gift to every child in Cyprus who writes a letter to Father Christmas.
The Andrey and Julia Dashin Foundation initiated their Christmas programme last year and are hoping that even more children will write in this year.
Last year over 300 letters were received, according to the foundation’s managing director, Alina Nabieva.
“Last year we answered more than 300 letters and gave around 350 gifts to children all over Cyprus. In addition, 10 families received a home visit from Santa. This year we are aiming to receive 500 letters and send over 600 gifts,” she said.
Nabieva said all the letters are carefully processed, the requested gifts are chosen and wrapped and then sent to the home address of each child.
“The foundation premises turns into Santa’s workshop during the Christmas season,” she said.
“The founders, especially Julia Dashina, have put a lot of effort into this Christmas campaign, and it’s her favourite time of the year. She believes that every child should receive a sprinkling of Christmas magic, and this campaign aims to do that.”
Children have until January 7 to send a personal letter to Santa.
The “Letter to Santa Claus”, is part of the foundation’s festive Christmas and New Year’s charity campaign, which will be taking place from November through to January, 2016, she added.
Nabieva said that due to economic hardship, not all children will receive presents this year and the foundation aims to rectify that adding, however, that the scheme is open to children from any background.
“This initiative aims to help parents create that special atmosphere for their child, no matter what their economic situation. Every child who has the courage to write and send in their letter to Santa Claus will receive a gift.”
She said that the foundation would prefer to receive hand written letters and added that reading through all of last year’s letters was a magical experience.
Nabieva pointed out that the foundation will try to send out the presents requested, but if the request can’t be met, a replacement gift will be provided.
Gifts will be sent to the recipients between the following festive days: 21-24 December 2015, 28-31 December 2015, 4-7 January 2016 and 13-15 January 2016.
The scheme is open to children of school and pre-school ages and the letter may be written in any format and theme. Illustrations and pictures are encouraged.
The letter needs to be addressed to Father Christmas and may be sent via email, fax or to the postal address of the foundation. Presents may be collected from the foundation’s office by appointment or will be hand delivered by couriers.
In addition, on December 20, all of the letters which have been received will be considered for “A magical Christmas Dream come true “, where an undisclosed number of winners will see Father Christmas personally delivering their present to their home.
For further details contact, the Dashin Foundation, 35, Lamprou Konstantara, Kato Polemidia, 4156, Limassol Tel: 25-246120/Fax: 25-246220. Email – [email protected], website – www.dashinfoundation.org
Letter to Santa application form: http://www.dashinfoundation.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Application-Form_EN.pdf