Social media users are getting the chance to be Santa to one of Scotland's thousands of homeless children this Christmas
A social media campaign which offers people the chance to buy presents for homeless children at Christmas is launching on Thursday 17 November.
Social media Santa is a partnership with housing and homelessness charity Shelter Scotland and has generated thousands of gifts for homeless children in Scotland via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
No child should be homeless at Christmas but we know there will be more than 5,000 children homeless this festive season across Scotland
The charity says that 5,224 children will be homeless this Christmas across Scotland.
Kind-hearted social media users are urged to buy presents suitable for boys and girls from six months to 16 years old and either post them or have them delivered directly to Social Media Santa (address below). People are asked not to gift wrap their presents in order to help identify appropriate gifts in terms of age.
Everyone who buys a gift is encouraged to post a photo of it on social media using the hashtag #SocialMediaSanta and to tag the Shelter Scotland account (@shelterscotland on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter). Social Media Santa runs from 17 November to 9 December.
Social media Santa is the idea of Ross McCulloch, director of Third Sector Lab, a specialist digital agency working with charities and social enterprises.
McCulloch said: "By sending gifts like books, toys or games, we are hoping that Social Media Santas will help make this Christmas better for hundreds of children and their families across Scotland.”
Graeme Brown, Director of Shelter Scotland, welcomed the iniative: “No child should be homeless at Christmas but we know there will be more than 5,000 children homeless this festive season across Scotland, so we will carry on our campaigning until there’s a home for everyone. Until then, we will always be grateful for the kindness and generosity of fundraisers and members of the public who donate to help our clients."
Social media users can send gifts to:
Social Media Santa
Shelter Scotland Edinburgh Community Hub
6 South Charlotte Street