Pop-up store offers Christmas cheer for struggling families
19 December 2020 at 8:00 am
The “Spirit of Christmas Shop” is looking to give away thousands of new presents over the festive season
For families that have struggled throughout a crisis-filled 2020, finding the money to buy Christmas gifts can cause further stress. But one man is looking to take the worry out of gift shopping, opening a pop-up store that will give away brand new presents for free.
Dennis Stevenson opened the store on Friday at Ocean Shores Shopping Centre near Byron Bay, offering people the chance to pick up free gifts until 6pm on Christmas Eve.
Stevenson has borrowed the shop and has volunteers helping him give away presents, which have been donated mostly by the community.
He said now was a special time to help people when many were struggling.
“Giving isn’t just the fastest way to change ourselves and our world. It’s the only way,” Stevenson said.
“Many families have dozens of new, unused things around the house they’d love to donate to help make sure no one goes without this Christmas.”
This isn’t the first time Stevenson has given away free presents.
It began in 2009, when he opened his first pop-up “Spirit of Christmas Shop” on the Gold Coast.
“[I] borrowed an empty Gold Coast shop in the week before Xmas, called it Spirit of Christmas and, with community help, gave away thousands of new presents,” Stevenson said.
He opened up the store in Brisbane from 2010 to 2012, and since 2016 has opened the shop in Ocean Shores.
You can find out more about the shop, as well as information on how to open your own “Spirit of Christmas Shop” here.