If you watch one ad this Christmas, make it this one

A child poverty charity has challenged the traditional festive ad by telling a ‘real’ Christmas story that most people will be unaware of.

With 835,000 workers in London being paid below the living wage and working women making up a disproportionate number of those it is children living in poverty who are suffering the most this Christmas.

A single parent on the National Living Wage is £74 a week short of the minimum income needed to afford a basic living standard, research has found, with an estimated 700,000 children living below the poverty line in the capital – a figure that is forecast to grow by 2020.

Now London’s child poverty charity – The Childhood Trust – will tell the real story of Christmas for London’s poorest children in a new ad that challenges the big Christmas TV adverts.

The film tells the story of a department store Santa who’s paid so little that he can’t even provide for his own children. The story has a sad twist as the gregarious Santa makes children in the store delightfully happy but goes home with a minimum wage pay packet that’s not enough to provide any presents or even enough food for his own children.

New research conducted to coincide with the launch revealed that 21,265 children living in poverty will receive no presents this year. Over two thirds of children supported by the charities say that they find Christmas a difficult time of year. Poverty is the primary reason for this. Almost all say material deprivation is the cause of their misery, with 82 per cent feeling left out compared to other children.

Laurence Guinness, the Chief Executive of The Childhood Trust said; “This Christmas, the reality for many children will be; hunger, anxiety, homelessness and feeling left out compared to other children. There’s no end of austerity in sight London’s poorest children as they suffer out of sight and out of mind. We’re calling on Londoners to donate now to their local children’s charity to help us ensure that as many children as possible have the help they need this Christmas and beyond”

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