YOUNGSTERS from disadvantaged homes will be given brand new winter clothing after the intu Braehead shopping centre stepped in to help a charity appeal.
And a special collection point for winter coats, jumpers, hats, scarves, gloves, boots, sock or tights and even slippers and warm pyjamas has been set up in the lower central atrium of the giant shopping mall.
The Back to School Bank Paisley charity was set up by Lochfield primary teacher, Lynne Gilday to buy and distribute school uniforms, PE kit, shoes, coats, hats and scarves along with pens, pencils, calculators and other stationery to youngsters whose families may be struggling financially.
Lynne explained why a special winter clothing appeal was launched: “We were getting more and more referrals of children who were in dire need of warm winter clothing.
“There are kids going to school in lightweight jackets and shoes – even sandshoes, in some case – and their families have next to nothing in terms of money to buy clothes. We’re not just asking for donations of school uniforms, but any kind of warm winter clothing.
“It’s heartbreaking to hear stories of how some kids don’t have proper winter clothing in this day and age and it’s through no fault of their own as their families are struggling to make ends meet.”
Lynne added: “We’re looking for brand new clothing as some of these kids have never worn anything to school but hand-me-downs, or second-hand clothes that are not the right size for them.
“We want to give these children the same sense of pride in wearing new clothes as other children have.
“One mum described us giving her a parcel of clothes for her children as it being like Christmas had come early.”
Community development manager at intu Braehead, Lydia Brown said: “This is one appeal for help that will make a real, practical difference to a youngster’s life. It could see them turning up at school with their clothes dry once they take their coat off rather than soaking wet from the rain or snow.
“This is a cause really worth supporting and I would ask everyone who can afford to buy some warm clothing to drop the items off at our collection point.”
Anyone wishing to donate to the Back to School Bank can also email backtoschoolbankpaisley@gmail.