Glossopdale Kids Send Teddies to Refugees
Tuesday 1st December 2015 @ 10:00 by Tom Greggan

Refugee children seeking a new life in the West are being comforted by teddies given by Glossopdale kids.

More than 1,000 of the soft toys are being shipped to families in Syria, and Lesvos and other Greek islands.

All of them with a message of love from youngsters in Glossop and other parts of the High Peak.

Behind the export of hope is Glossop mum and businesswoman Jo Gregory who heard about TeddyAid, a child-to-child project where UK children donate a soft toy and a letter to a refugee child.

Jo has been collecting teddies in Glossop and the surrounding areas since late September and has been overwhelmed with the response from local people.

She said: “I asked for organisations and schools who would be interested and the result was really humbling. Over 10 schools and organisations got involved, working hard to collect as many soft toys as possible.

“We have collected well over 1,000 teddies, all of which are currently in transit.

“It may only be a small gesture towards the plight of the refugees, but the emotional support that these teddies give is priceless.

“Shipping these teddies can take up to four weeks, but we are expecting pictures of the refugees receiving the teddies any day now.”

Glossop schools and groups which have got involved with the project so far include Simmondley Pre-School, Dinting Primary School, and Whistlestop Play Café.

Dinting school head Lynn Elliott said: “The school was delighted to be invited to become a collection point for Teddy Aid.

“The response from pupils and their families has been incredible.

“Through the appeal, pupils have become more aware of the plight of young children caught up in the current crisis and were only too happy to donate a toy to help another child. The appeal is only asking for a very small gesture from us, but it is one that could make a huge difference to the wellbeing of young children.”

Jo also works as part of The Hummingbird Project – High Peak People Helping Refugees which supplies aid to refugees escaping from tyranny.

Jo and friends raised £4,500 to buy more aid with a sponsored climb of Snowdon last week.

She said: “The climb was epic to say the least, with weather of Biblical proportions, with gusting winds of 80 miles an hour, almost zero visibility and a summit temperature of minus-three degrees… it was gruelling.”