Six-year-old army kid Theo Carter (pictured right in main photo), from Kingston upon Thames, is on a mission to provide toys for those children who may not get a present this year.

He’s launched Theo’s Teddy Rescue to provide toys to families who may struggle this Christmas and to raise funds for military child bereavement charity Scotty’s Little Soldiers.

He got the idea after watching a news item on food banks and chatting to his mum about children who may not receive a gift this year.

To start with, he’s put his own toys up for sale on his new website but he’s also looking for donations of new and nearly-new toys which will go to children that need them. Theo is being joined by his friend Seb Barclay, who is helping with the mission.

Statistics from End Child Poverty show that 30 per cent of children were living in poverty before the pandemic, that’s 500,000 higher than five years ago.

Theo’s mum, Sara, says: “The pandemic has provided extra challenges this year for many families already on and below the poverty line and Theo was really sad to hear that some children will not have enough to eat or get a present. We usually fill up a shoebox with gifts but he said he wanted to do something extra.”

Pledges of support have already come in from across the UK and Ireland with one lady even offering to donate fifty of her prized teddies to the cause.

Theo says: “I was very sad when I watched the news and thought I could do something for children who may not get a toy from Santa. I hope people will buy a toy or sponsor one and we raise lots of money. Someone donated a teddy that I liked, but mum says I have to save up my pocket money to buy it from our shop.”

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