Charmaine Ardley is always on the lookout for a bargain but the recipient is usually someone else.
For 12 months of the year the Corowa resident with a big heart accumulates gifts that are stored in a spare wardrobe until the end of the year when they are donated to the Woolworths and Amaranth Foundation Christmas Tree Appeal.
Presents donated to the Christmas appeal go to clients of local care organisation, Amaranth.
“It puts a smile on my face knowing that these gifts will brighten someone’s day,” Ms Ardley said.
“We want people to know that there are people out there thinking of them through their tough times.”
The Christmas appeal has been running for five years and Ms Ardley has been involved for the past three.
“For me, I have been in the situation where I have had it tough too and I have picked this foundation to help because of what it stands for,” she said.
“I want to be able to back them to help the other families.”
This means all year Ms Ardley is on the lookout for a bargain.
“You just put a little bit away each week and then when you are out and about and you see something that is really good then you can grab it,” she said.
“I store it up the top of the cupboard in the spare bedroom and it’s very full by the end of the year.”
Ms Ardley recalls purchasing a beautiful new handbag and matching purse which was on sale one year at a chemist.
“For a woman to receive that kind of gift is truly special,” she said.
Cards are on the Christmas appeal tree giving the age and gender of clients for people to then purchase a gift to go to that particular recipient.
The gift can be left under the tree and should be left unwrapped.
Donations of money are also accepted.
Charlyne Hickling from Woolworths and one of the organisers of the appeal takes the gifts home and wraps them with the help of her daughter before they are given to Amaranth.
“I take them home, wrap them and write the ages on them,” she said.
“We also have a list of what is in each gift so that we can give that to Amaranth so that they can pair the gift up with an appropriate recipient.”
Ms Hickling said they struggle to fill presents for males over the age of 70 and middle aged women.
“We have fulfilled all our kids’ gifts now pretty much, so it would be good to get presents for some of the older age groups who can be harder to find gifts for,” she said.