Christmas is also a time ...

Ikea refugee shelters

Whilst Christmas is a time for cheer there are many in the world in a lot less fortunate positions, which is why we applaud the Swedish furniture giant for stepping up and creating these wonderful easy to assemble refugee shelters.  Working with the company Better Shelter to help those in need, these shelters replace traditional tents, and are flatpack structures that can be erected easily and are fitted with solar panels, mosquito nets, lights, and ventilation. There are also lockable doors - a key feature, as lack of privacy at refugee camps can leave women and children vulnerable. One shelter can last an average of three years, compared with traditional tents, which typically last only a few months.  

Helping the homeless - with “Crack and Cider”

Another one that tugged at our heartstrings. Stuck for last-minute gift ideas? Two Londoners have set up a pop-up shop to help London’s rough sleepers this winter. The first of its kind, the duo named their shop Crack + Cider in a tongue-in-cheek play on the stereotype that homeless people just spend their money on drugs and alcohol. It sells winter essentials such as durable clothing that customers can buy to give to homeless people, via soup kitchens. Order online, or visit the pop-up shop at 72 Kingsland Road, E2 8AG (open every day till 23 Dec).