20 Dec 2012
Staff and students at London Business School have donated 500 Christmas presents for local youngsters in the ward of Church Street.
The area in Marylebone is among the top 5% most deprived areas in England, with high levels of unemployment, crime and inadequate housing.
With the community being in close proximity to the School, employees and students like to support local children, aged from one to 10, by organising annual festive toy drives.
This is the second year of the initiative and so far there have been more than 1,100 toys donated by the School overall.
Since December 7 these gifts have been handed out at nurseries, the children's ward at St Mary's Hospital and a community centre's Christmas party. The final delivery of presents from the toy drive will take place on 21 December.
John Macdonald, Community Engagement Officer for City West Homes, described just how much the scheme means to local youngsters.
"The Christmas Toy Drive organised by London Business School gives the kids in the local area a great lift," he said.
"It means so much to them all. They think it's a fantastic thing."
Meanwhile, Tina Clark, Chair of London Business School's Community Action Group, revealed that the initiative is just as important to those involved with the School.
She said: "Our annual toy drive is very popular with colleagues and students.
"We value our growing relationship with the local community and derive a lot of pleasure from giving something back in this way".