As the year 2023 comes to a close, school has finished, holidays have began…and the festive season has arrived!

However, for the many children living with special needs, challenging life or health circumstances, Christmas time doesn’t mean they can switch off their day-to-day challenges and enjoy this holiday period as many of us can. For these kids, the struggle is real and Christmas time is just another reminder of how ‘different’ they are to others.

But thanks to the Special Children’s Christmas Parties foundation, each year nearly 10,000 kiwi kids who experience these difficulties are invited to a party like no other! For once, these kids have the chance to ‘feel normal’. At these parties, they aren’t judged, stared at or avoided, they can interact with those that have similar problems and their parents or caregivers can also relax and connect with others.

Since 1988, the Special Children’s Christmas Parties foundation has hosted 140 parties throughout NZ, put a smile on 190,000 children’s faces and gifted approximately 560,000 toys!

The Rapid Relief Team (RRT) was proud to once again support the Special Children’s Christmas Parties initiative throughout NZ during 2023. To witness the impact these events have on the attending kids, parents and caregivers was truly rewarding, and felt very relevant to RRT’s purpose of delivering hope and relief to people across the globe.

During 2023, RRT supported the Special Children’s Christmas Parties in Napier, Christchurch, Wellington, Hamilton and Auckland. A combined total of 118 RRT volunteers attended these events, providing 8750 meals, 7128 water bottles and 1000 packets of lollies!

Click on the below video to see the action at Christchurch’s Special Children’s Christmas Party…

Just a quick note to say a big thanks to you and your awesome team for all your help on Saturday. We had a great turnout and the RRT area looked like it was non stop all day – your team handled it with precision as per usual 😊 It was a pleasure to work with you again as usual – have a great finish to 2023!

Mark Wikstrom

NZ Operations Manager for Special Children's Christmas Parties Ltd

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