This is being organized by some local Churches and LPN will be helping out again this year.
How it Works
Chose a child to buy for – Boy/Girl age!
Find a shoebox (adult size) and cover the lid and box separately in wrapping paper.
Fill the box with your wrapped gifts. Here’s some ideas:
Something to love e.g. a doll, a teddy
Something for school e.g a pencil case, an eraser
Something to wear e.g. a scarf, a hat, socks, hair bands
Something to play with e.g. a toy, a game
Something yummy e.g. sweets (that won’t melt)
Something special e.g. a ‘wow’ item
All gifts should be new, safe and suitable e.g. no sharp items, nothing breakable, no guns or soldiers
If you wish, add a Christmas card with a personal greeting and blessings for your child. Close the box (preferably with elastic bands) and add a label with the gender and age.
Greek Evangelical Church hall opposite the old hospital on Tuesdays between 8 – 11am Fridays between 6 – 8:30pm - Larnaca Thrift shop 1st April Street.
There are a few issues, on which I must sound like a broken (and rather irritating) record, but they continue to plague and perplex me, with one of the top issues being The Food Children Eat.
I have commented in the past about the disgusting food served at organised birthday parties (purpose built venues and play places), and it continues to truly disappoint me now that the new school year has started and the birthday party invitations are flooding in once more.
I cannot understand why our most precious next generation is given bright yellow nuggets, low quality 'meat' burgers and over-salted and processed chips, whilst the adults munch away on a buffet that typically includes salads, grilled meat on skewers and other far more preferable choices than the poor children have been given. I am not criticizing parents who book these parties, as this is what is on offer by the establishments as standard packages, and I am also not a mother who sits there tutting and forbidding my children to eat party food and birthday cake. At parties, they have carte blanche to eat what they want.
But whilst the odd birthday party now and then is fine in the greater scheme of their diet, I have been very dismayed to find that state primary schools have canteens where children can buy snacks during their breaks.
My first issue is that these canteens sell absolute rot, including ice tea, ice cream, chocolate bars and fatty or chemical powder-laden savoury choices. My second issue is that children that young (my son is six) should not be trusted to make decisions about what they eat when presented with a selection that is not varied and balanced.
I also cannot understand for the life of me why teachers want children high on additives and sugar in their classrooms. It is a well-documented fact that what children eat affects their concentration and energy levels, i.e., their ability to learn and their behaviour. Through no fault of their own, some of those children will end up being labelled as having behavioural or learning issues when it is simply a matter of poor diet affecting them.
But the issue really took the (overly processed) biscuit when last week my son came home with a letter from the school. On the first side was a request for parents not to send their children to school with junk, but to give them fruit and vegetables to bring in, and to treat their classmates with fruit and vegetables on their birthdays or name days.
And on the other side of the letter was… the price list for the school canteen! A catalogue of foods that children should not eat and drink (at least not on a daily basis), and barely anything on it that they should!
My son is not allowed to buy from the canteen, and thankfully, there are other like-minded mothers who send their children to school with a healthy lunchbox and no tuck money - so he is not singled out, nor is he particularly bothered. But we really need to get the UK celebrity chef and pioneer of children's nutrition in schools - Jamie Oliver - in quick; for the sake of the future of our island, and that is one broken record you will keep hearing from me.
First appeared in They Cyprus Weekly, 09/10/15
For example, he has to have a shower every morning (not a bad one to have I suppose, at least he is clean) even if we are going to the beach that day. I remember one morning we overslept and we dared to refuse him a shower. Not only did he have a complete meltdown, which made us even later for school, but his meltdown turned into a day long tantrum where he refused to work, concentrate or cooperate at all...with ANYONE (a nightmare for all his teachers and for us!). Let me just diverge slightly to explain to those who may not know the difference between a meltdown and a tantrum. Anyone who has ever raised a toddler knows what a tantrum is. It is an emotional outburst of rage or frustration. It usually because you have either said no to something they want, or in my younger son's case because you put crackers instead of cereal in his lunchbox/he wants to play with his cousin and she isn't home or he doesn't want to leave yiayia's house/Hobos etc.. During a tantrum a child may have some control over his behaviour, especially if they are older. My second son even stops in the middle of a tantrum to make sure I am looking at him. If I say one word to him, he picks up where he left off, refusing to listen if it is not the answer he wants.