Wales

Christmas: Boy, 7, collects essentials for homeless people

Mason with bags for homeless collection Image copyright Family photo
Image caption Last year Mason collected 18 bags of essentials for the homeless

A seven-year-old boy has been collecting essentials to distribute to homeless people this Christmas.

Last year Mason asked his mother if he could donate his duvet, which quickly escalated to distributing 18 drawstring bags filled with essentials.

This year the youngster, from Rhyl, Denbighshire, collected more than 200 items including toiletries, warm clothing and food.

Mason said donating "made him feel all funny inside, but a nice funny".

He said he wanted to help because "they have no home and it's nearly Christmas and they have no family that cares about them - it's sad".

With the help of his mother, Mason got his family and school friends involved and managed to collect more than 200 items including toothbrushes, thermal socks and gloves and sanitary products.

His mother, Claire Perris, said her son had always asked questions about homeless people and it "warms her heart" to see him care so much.

Donations were taken to Ty Golau, which provides emergency accommodation for homeless people in Rhyl, to give out to people who use its service throughout the year.

Image copyright Family photo
Image caption Mason's mum Claire said he doesn't understand all the fuss and "just wanted to help"

Senior project officer Lynda Williams said: "We have been overwhelmed with the donations received and would like to thank Mason for his kindness and for thinking about the project.

"It is so lovely to know that Mason at his age thinks of others and it is good to raise awareness to everyone of homelessness and how we can look at ways of working together to start tackling it."

Ms Perris said that this was Mason's way of showing that "as exciting as it is for children to get presents at Christmas it's important to be mindful that not everyone is so lucky as us and Christmas is really about being kind and spreading happiness".

Denbighshire council recorded just one homeless person for 2018-2019, a statistic that has been criticised by some charities who brand the counting system as outdated.

Shelter Cymru said it had worked with 13 people living on Denbighshire's streets and the method involved "a single one-night count in November".

A spokesman said Mason's gesture was an "inspiration to others and sets a positive attitude to other children, young people and adults towards people who are street homeless".

More on this story