Sustainability Action Blog


Ensuring no child was without a present at Christmas

By Julia Kendal |


Guest blog by Marika Stone, East Asia Administrator in the University’s International Office. Marika coordinated the University’s team contributing to the Christmas Complete Project.

Thanks to all staff and students who contributed to the success of the University of Southampton Christmas Complete Project 2015! Christmas Complete is run by Southampton City and Region Action to Combat Hardship (S.C.R.A.T.C.H) and in 2015 was supported by a group of staff by making it accessible and convenient for staff and students to drop off their donations here on campus.

The  Christmas Complete 2015 project at the University was extremely successful, generating enthusiasm and so many donations from across the organisation. Staff managed 9 different collection points at Highfield, Avenue, WSA, SGH, and NOC campuses, including a staffed lunch-time collection point for one week at the Highfield Staff Club. The photo below shows the volume of gifts collected at Building 37, Highfield Campus alone!

Donations to one collection point alone

More than 60 University volunteers were involved in the organisation, collection, storage and delivery of gifts and countless numbers of staff and students donated. It was impossible to count how many donations were received as there were so many, but we know that there were at least 10 full estate car loads of gifts, including a variety of quality presents for different age groups.

The project also generated a lot of interest in S.C.R.A.T.C.H. At least 19 Southampton University volunteers gave their time to help S.C.R.A.T.C.H. sort, pack and deliver presents and a savings club in the Faculty of Health Sciences donated their annual interest to the Charity.

S.C.R.A.T.C.H. very much appreciated the University’s support. Overall, the 2015 Christmas Complete project was able to help at least 1938 children and young people from over 780 families in Southampton and the surrounding areas. S.C.R.A.T.C.H. says: “None of this would be possible without the huge number of donations from individuals, businesses, churches and schools.”

We intend to continue working with S.C.R.A.T.C.H. to support their projects and will be in touch in the future with further ways that staff and students can help.

Thank you again to everyone who took part in Christmas Complete 2015.