Donna steps into Santa’s boots

Just Regional
Dec 9, 2016 4 mins read

In the final week of its Christmas campaign, the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital has been receiving generous donations of gifts.

A team from the hospital welcomed Donna Clarke, from Hellesdon, who arrived with a car full of gifts to donate to the campaign which aims to give every inpatient in hospital on Christmas Day a gift to open. Donna has been collecting gifts to donate all year, having also given presents to the 2015 Christmas appeal at the hospital.

Donna said: “I’ve spent time in hospital and know that it’s the little things that really make a difference. We’ve managed to collect a variety of gifts, for all ages and genders and hope that these will go a long way towards making a patient’s stay in hospital more comfortable over the festive season. I’ve had a lot of help from friends, family and work colleagues and would like to say thanks to everyone who has contributed to making this donation happen.”

Donna delivered around 150 gifts to the hospital this year, having more than doubled the total of 70 gifts she donated in 2015. The donation included a huge variety of gifts, ranging from hair styling products for teenagers to toiletries suitable for new mothers.

When asked whether she’d now be taking a break from present collecting after her efforts this year, Donna said: “We’re definitely going to be taking part next year, we really enjoy seeing the donations build up throughout the year – although we usually have to dedicate our spare bedroom to storing them all!”

Another local business has also offered their support for the campaign. Parkmoore Capital Ltd, a financial services and investment company launching in January 2017, contacted the hospital to find out more about how they could help the appeal.

The company, based in Norwich, has raised around £3,000 in order to support the appeal and has kindly offered to use these funds to ensure that all patients in the hospital will have a suitable gift to open on Christmas Day. Moving into the final week of the campaign, the hospital is looking for gifts for teenagers and male patients, so it will be these gifts in particular that Parkmoore will be helping to provide. The company will be delivering the purchased gifts to the hospital next week.

Neil Debenham, Parkmoore Operations Manager, said: “We’re delighted to be a new supporter of the NNUH Send a Smile with Santa appeal. No-one wants to be in hospital or to have one of their loved ones in hospital on Christmas Day and this campaign is a great way of being able to make that time a little more special. We wanted to make a difference to patients and to help spread some Christmas cheer.”

Emma McKay, NNUH Director of Nursing said: “ We’ve been thrilled by the generosity shown by local people and businesses over the course of our Send a Smile with Santa campaign and I’d like to extend our sincere thanks to Donna, Parkmoore Capital and the many others who have helped support our appeal. As we enter the final few days of our campaign, we’d be very grateful for help in making our Christmas appeal wish a reality.”

There is still time to donate and delivery points have been set up at all main receptions in the hospital and the Evening News offices at Rouen Road. For more information, please contact Louise Cook, NNUH fundraising manager on 01603 287107 or via

Donna Clarke donating presents to the hospital with NNUH fundraising manager Louise Cook.

Donna Clarke donating presents to the hospital with NNUH fundraising manager Louise Cook.

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