Murupara's April O'Brien is on a mission to collect 100 gifts before Christmas.

For the second year running the volunteer is taking it upon herself to ensure local youngsters have a little sparkle at Christmas time.

"It's been a tough year for many in Murupara and surrounding districts so we are asking for help so we can do something special for the children, all who deserve a bit of magic in their lives.

"We have 100 registered children aged between 0 and 16 within the Murupara Ward and I am hoping to have presents for each and every one of them."


O'Brien said Dr Lance O'Sullivan, who spent time in Murupara as a newly graduated doctor, had given a monetary donation to the toy drive.

"We've also had koha from Murupara's Lil Vic's Takeaways and several other community members.

"Things are starting to happen and I am very grateful for the generosity of others."

Last Christmas the gifts were distributed to Murupara families prior to Christmas Day so they could be placed under the tree. In Kaingaroa they were given out from the local fire truck on Christmas Day while in Minginui Santa rode a quad bike and handed out presents to local youngsters, also on Christmas Day.

"We're hoping to be able to do it all again and in similar fashion this year," O'Brien said.

Anyone wishing to donate can do so by dropping gifts to 41 Rewa Crescent in Murupara or by getting in touch with O'Brien on She is happy to collect.