MORE than 800 children met Santa, had photos taken with giant gingerbread men and received Christmas gifts at Pillgwenlly Festive Experience.

The event took place at the Newport Yemeni Community Association (NYCA), the first event held at NYCA’s Cultural Hub on Temple Street on Thursday, December 14.

Adele Harries-Nicholas, strategic partnerships manager at Business in the Community (BITC), said:  “Pill is one of the areas in Newport with the highest levels of deprivation, and that’s why it was so moving and heart-warming to see children who may have otherwise not received a gift this Christmas leave with not only a Christmas gift each but also huge smiles and memories that will stay with them for many years to come”.

South Wales Argus: Sleigh full of giftsSleigh full of gifts (Image: NYCA Facebooko)

Approximately a quarter of under 16s are living in some of the most deprived parts of Pill.

BITC runs a national programme working with companies in nine places around the UK, to support underserved communities with long-term and sustainable solutions.

Reggie Al-Haddi, chair of the NYCA, stated: “Through the invaluable partnership with Business in the Community, NYCA has witnessed a transformative impact on the Pillgwenlly community, one of Wales’s most deprived areas”.

A ‘Seeing is Believing’ visit in Newport in 2023 saw business leaders brought into Newport communities, including Pill, to understand everyday challenges faced by the local people and businesses.

Following the visit, Linklaters LLP donated to the NYCA, which went towards renovations to the NYCA centre, including building a new roof.

Mr Al-Haddi also said: “Bringing the Celtic Manor Festive Experience to our neighbourhood has been nothing short of magical – seeing the joy on the faces of over 800 children as they visit Santa and receive gifts is a testament to the power of collective efforts”.

The event was held in partnership with Business in the Community (BITC) and The Celtic Collection.

South Wales Argus: Flyer for Pillgwenlly Festive Experience Flyer for Pillgwenlly Festive Experience (Image: NYCA Facebook)

Ian Edwards, chief executive of Celtic Collection, said: “Business in the Community is a brilliant initiative, and it was a real pleasure to share some of our amazing festive experiences with the local community and support the excellent work done by so many volunteers”.

When speaking about the event, Mr Al-Haddi said: “Together, we have demonstrated the profound impact that collaboration can have on people's lives. Together, we are stronger, and it is through these collective efforts that we bring joy, warmth, and hope to those who need it most".

  • Click through the gallery above to see a full collection of pictures from the event.