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A quarter of Welsh people expect to experience poor physical or mental health this Christmas

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Around one quarter of Welsh people expect to experience poor physical and/or mental health this Christmas, according to a survey of 2,000 people carried out by Censuswide for charity The Big Give.

The survey also found that nearly half of Wales residents (45%) may need to take on debt to cover the costs of Christmas this year.

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That’s more than the UK national average, where 37% say they are concerned about incurring debt this Christmas.

Nearly two-thirds of Cardiff residents (60%) said they are worried about the cost of Christmas this year.

A campaign organised by the Big Give and backed by celebrities such as Stephen Fry, Dame Judi Dench, Russell Brand and others is aiming to help. The Big Give Christmas Challenge, the UK’s biggest Christmas coordinated fundraising appeal, is supporting over 900 charities to raise funds with the unique offer of matching any donations made during the week of 30th November – 7th December.

Derek Spinks, marketing and communication manager at Carmarthen-based national charity Cerebra, which helps children with brain conditions and their families discover a better life together said: “We are delighted to, once again, be a part of The Big Give Christmas Challenge. It’s a great opportunity for us to double our donations, and essentially deliver twice the impact!”

Vanessa Waddon, Founder and Transformational Manager at Hope Rescue in Llanharan said: ‘The Big Give is a brilliant festive opportunity to connect with our supporters to raise funds for projects that will improve the lives of the dogs, that through no fault of their own, find themselves in our care. This year we are aiming to raise vital funds that will keep our Home from Home Kennels running in early 2022. The reconfiguration work on our Home from Home Kennels to make additional room for those dogs with extra needs has been on our list for some time and we were thrilled to be able to get started on this in 2021.

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“The funds raised from the #ChristmasChallenge2021 will help us to kit out the kennels with all essentials to support those dogs, with the greatest need. Over the last 18 months we have seen more and more dogs entering our care with medical and behavioural needs, often both. Our Home from Home Kennels provide dogs with these needs the space they need to rehabilitate, relax, recover and learn to trust again before going on to the life that they deserve.

“We know we can’t change their past, but we can change their future. Christmas really is an extraordinary time of giving and we look forward to spreading the magic in this year’s campaign.”

Alex Day, Director of The Big Give said: “Our study shows that, sadly, people across Wales and the UK in general, are facing an imperfect storm; High fuel prices, chronic mental health problems, rising debt, loneliness and fears about Covid-19 will mean that, for many, this festive period will be a far cry from picture perfect scenes portrayed on Christmas cards.

“Some will rely on charities which will be further and further stretched as demand grows.

“That is why, for those who can, supporting charities is more important than ever. Through The Christmas Challenge campaign, we are offering to match any donation made to hundreds of amazing charities through h theBigGive.org.uk. That means whatever you can give will go twice as far.”

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