The Good Holiday Spirit campaign for families with children in Finland will be launched again in November. The protracted Covid pandemic has increased families’ need for help, and the goal is to delight 36,000 families with a grocery voucher.
The prolongation of the Covid pandemic has been reflected in the need for help in two ways. Families that already had financial or health issues have been hit hardest by the pandemic, and for them the situation has grown worse. Due to furloughs, lay-offs and difficulties faced by small companies, new families are now also in need of help.
Approximately 121,000 children and young people under the age of 18 live in low-income families in Finland. Poverty causes constant stress and reduces parents’ ability to meet the needs of their children. Poverty, especially in families with babies, has serious and long-lasting impacts.
Children and young people from families with limited means feel excluded as they cannot do the same things as their peers. Poverty also increases the risk of being bullied.
Childhood poverty often carries a profound effect into adulthood. Children from low-income families have less faith in their potential and chance for a good future. Financial difficulties are also linked to lower grades and shorter education.
The campaign aims to give away 36,000 grocery vouchers
This year, the goal of the Good Holiday Spirit campaign is to raise 2.5 million euros. The funds will allow us to delight 36,000 low-income families with a EUR 70 grocery gift voucher. The voucher is, as the name implies, a gift, and you can’t apply for one. The Mannerheim League for Child Welfare and the Finnish Red Cross work with local organisations such as children’s health clinics, church social workers and social services to find families in need.
This year, each supermarket chain involved in the campaign – Kesko, the S Group and Lidl – has its own voucher. There is an equal number of vouchers for each chain, and they are distributed across Finland.
This year is the 25th Good Holiday Spirit campaign. The campaign starts on 19 November and continues until Christmas Eve. The Mannerheim League for Child Welfare and the Finnish Red Cross are organising the campaign in partnership with YLE.
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