Pyjama party for local homeless children

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Tesco Staff collecting pyjamas. Pic © Pyjama Party Liverpool

A mother-daughter team aims to help homeless children in Liverpool this Christmas by providing them with a pair of new pyjamas.

Karen and Ash Downing have been running the Liverpool Pyjama party since 2013, organising donations of nightwear to be distributed to young people in need.

They are collecting all sizes and anything from newborn baby to older-teen pyjamas will be accepted at various local drop-off points.

Pyjama party organiser Karen explained her motivation for becoming involved four years ago. She told JMU Journalism: “I had seen a poster for Shelter saying that 80,000 children were going to be homeless this Christmas, which I thought for one child is awful, but 80,000 is terrible.

“I shared the post on Facebook, asking what we could do and a friend, Susan Jackson, said she would love to help so we got together and just kind of came up with the idea.

“We are getting more requests than ever this year – it’s very tough times and we have had a lot more services requesting if we can support the people they are working with.

Facebook: Pyjama Party Liverpool

Homelessness charity Shelter estimates that more than 125,000 homeless children are living in the UK today, many of whom are on Merseyside. Some will be spending Christmas living in a hostel or other temporary accommodation.

Mrs Downing admitted: “We know we can’t solve that, but pyjamas are more about letting the kids have what everyone else does on Christmas Eve. Last year, we got a lovely email off one of the refuges saying that they were all sitting around in their pyjamas on Christmas Eve and that’s just what it’s about.”

Local businesses have been getting involved, volunteering themselves as collection points and holding pyjama parties to encourage staff and customers to donate.

The appeal will be running until December 15th and all items need to be donated by then.

Donations can be taken into any Co-operative store across the region and to find out more information about where you can donate, visit the pyjama party Facebook page.

About Chloe George, JMU Journalism