£3,000 worth of toys and Christmas gifts for critically ill children were stolen from St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington. But the British public have condemned this deplorable act in the best way possible – by donating to a crowdfunding campaign with compassion and generosity.
The intensive care unit at St Mary’s treats children with debilitating illnesses, and those who’ve suffered accidents or acute physical trauma. The gifts, which were donated by the general public, had been stored in a ward in advance of a Christmas party. A party specifically for those children too unwell to return home over the festive period. They were then stolen, allegedly at some point between early October and 17 November 2016.
According to reports, the thieves even nicked the Santa costume, and the decorations.
Everything was taken, toys, gifts for the party, Lego, games, arts and crafts, books, teddies – everything went.
They were stored at an unused ward at the hospital, which is not for the public and we don’t know what happened – or whether or not there was a break in.
Westminster CID are investigating the theft. Detective Sergeant Tom Hirst stated:
This is an awful crime at this time of year and hard to imagine what kind of person would steal gifts so clearly destined for sick children to make their lives a little brighter this festive season. We are appealing for any witnesses or anyone with information to please contact us as soon as possible.
COSMIC’s efforts were far from in vain. In the short time since the theft became public knowledge, the Virgin Money donation page has raised more than ten times what the crooks took. The current total sits at over £30,000 – a figure which rises to more than £36,000 with additional Gift Aid, and a whopping 1031% of the original target.
Amid all the gloomy headlines of late, at a time when political divides are increasing and the world seems to be taking a turn towards the more territorial and insular, it’s heartening to see the benevolence of the British people shine through so triumphantly. Sometimes, when awful things happen, people show you the best of what they have to offer.
Of course, knocking the target out the park is no reason to stop now. How about we give the children staying at St Mary’s hospital a sack of gifts even the most buff Father Christmas would struggle to get down a chimney?
– Donate to the campaign here.
– If you have any information regarding the theft, contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, or visit crimestoppers-uk.org.
Featured image via Geograph.org
We need your help to keep speaking the truth
Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.
Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.
We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.
In return, you get:
* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop
Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.
With your help we can continue:
* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do
We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?