X Factor star Lola Saunders is inviting people to don jolly jumpers this Christmas to help a South Tyneside charity.
Lola, from East Boldon, joined staff at St Clare’s Hospice for the launch of its Jolly Jumper Day.
Bosses at the charity, in Primrose Terrace, Jarrow, are hoping schools, workplaces, colleges and groups of friends will don festive attire to raise funds for the organisation on Friday, December 11.
Lola has become a patron of the charity, which provides palliative care to the people of South Tyneside with life-limiting illnesses, after visiting earlier in the year and being impressed by the services it offers.
She said: “Jolly Jumper Day is a really fun and easy way for people to show their support for such a worthwhile local cause.
“Wearing your Christmas jumper always cheers you up and puts a smile on people’s faces, why not make the most of it?”
Wearing your Christmas jumper always cheers you up and puts a smile on people’s faces, why not make the most of it?Lola Saunders
Local schools are also supporting Jolly Jumper Day, including St Aloysius in Hebburn, Ashley Primary School in South Shields and St Matthew’s RC Primary School in Jarrow.
St Matthew’s headteacher, Martin Humble, said: “As a school we like to support global, national and local charities and we find that often children will associate more readily with local causes. We decided to join Jolly Jumper Day as St Clare’s is so close to the school and most families have been touched by someone needing palliative care.
“On the day we are going to encourage the children to be creative and thoughtful by making or decorating their own jumpers rather than simply buying a new Christmas jumper.”
Sonia Graham, senior fundraiser for the hospice said: “Jolly Jumper Day came about after many businesses and groups opted to wear Christmas jumpers during last year’s Santa Suit Day so we thought why not call it Jolly Jumper Day.
“Taking part is easy, all people need to do is dig out their favourite festive knit to help make a difference for local people and their families.”
Participants each donate £1 which will be put towards patient care at the hospice. Supporters are also encouraged to give out prizes for the best jumper, hold a raffle, have a Christmas themed bake sale or a festive buffet to boost fundraising.
For schools, St Clare’s also have a supply of colouring-in posters of their mascot Buddy. Schools can also organise a visit from a St Clare’s community fundraiser to give a talk in assembly about the work the hospice does.
For a fundraising pack, call 0191 451 6400, email firstname.lastname@example.org or register online at www.stclareshospice.co.uk/events/jolly-jumper-day.