This year, NEMS will be supporting local organisation, BAGS OF KINDNESS.

Bag of Kindness was set up during the first coronavirus lockdown in support of domestic abuse refuges in East London and Essex.

Clare Hartley, founder of the organisation says…

I was horrified to read about the rocketing rates of reported domestic abuse and felt that I had to do something to support these ladies and families at such a difficult time. Lockdown was hard for us all but simply unimaginable when you’re living in a violent home and for those that have escaped to try and rebuild their lives, at such a challenging time and with so many services that would normally be available – now stretched due to demand, paused or closed due to financial difficulties.

Bags of Kindness donates bags of essential toiletries form women and buddy bags for children for when they first arrive into safe houses. Both are designed to make life a little bit easier and more comfortable. The buddy bags include pyjamas and slippers, a book, teddy, toy, colouring book etc – all buddy bags are gender and age appropriate.

Bags of Kindness also support refuges by donating birthday presents, cakes and decorations to ensure that no child misses out on celebrating their special day. It is for this reason I only accept brand new and not second hand donations. I want these children to feel like my own do on their birthdays – special, loved and important. My motto is that if it is not good enough for your children, then it is not good enough for theirs and they deserve the best.

I have been delighted to receive donations from across the local community but am still in need of the following items:

  • Flannels
  • Hand Sanitizers (small bottle)
  • Disposable face masks
  • Children toys – for all ages

Many thanks.”

To find out more about Bags of Kindness visit:

If you would like to donate items, please contact Cathy at or on 07505621835 so that a drop-off time and location can be arranged.

Deadline for donations Sunday 29th November.