Kirkgate Market butcher Malcom Michaels starts Christmas present campaign for children

A butchers in Leeds Kirkgate Market is asking people to donate presents for the children of those being supported for alcohol and drug misuse.

By Rebecca Marano
Saturday, 4th December 2021, 4:45 am

It is the second time that Malcolm Michaels butchers have asked people to donate the presents and it is in support of Forward Leeds.

Established in July 2015, Forward Leeds is Britain’s second biggest multi-agency drug and alcohol service.

It supports adults and young people to make healthy choices about alcohol and drugs and has three main centres across Leeds and a Recovery Academy called 5 WAYS off Burley Road.

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Malcolm Michaels in Kirkgate Market is once again asking people to donate presents for the children of those being supported for alcohol and drug use by Forward Leeds. From left to right Sarah Hindle from Forward Leeds and butcher Malcolm Leary.

The Malcolm Michaels campaign made national news last year when Reese Fletcher from Kippax donated over £3000 worth of toys with money that his firm, Fletcher's Fencing and Decking, raised making wooden Christmas trees.

Malcolm Leary, who owns the butchers said: ”It’s been another difficult year for a lot of people in Leeds.

"Many people may have found that their alcohol or drug issues have escalated during the pandemic.

"We know that alcohol and drug problems can affect any family.

“If people are going to Forward Leeds they are trying to get help themselves.

"They have realised their life’s not going they way wanted.

"We would like to help parents trying hard get their life organised with a little extra something for their children this Christmas while they are getting things sorted for for the future.”

Forward Leeds has a Family Plus team that helps and supports clients and their families through their recovery journey from substance issues.

As well as running groups and activities to enable families to spend positive time together, they work with children of clients directly to provide assistance and explore wellbeing.

Sophie Parker who manages the Family Plus team at Forward Leeds said: “The gifts that Malcolm, Reese and everyone donated last year were so well received.

"We literally had people in tears of gratitude.

"We’re delighted that Malcolm had decide to do this again and we can’t wait to see the parent’s expressions when they see the gifts donated.

"A lot of families had a Christmas last year thanks to Malcolm’s hard work”.

There is a giant Perspex box near to Malcolm Michaels Butchers in Kirkgate Market where people can donate unwrapped presents.

These will then be collected up by Forward Leeds and delivered by their team to children across the city.

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