John Lewis and Vangarde Shopping Park have donated gift bags to a local refuge supporting victims of domestic abuse.

IDAS (Independent Domestic Abuse Services) has received care packages including bedding and towels in time for the festive period. It is the largest specialist charity in Yorkshire supporting anyone affected by domestic abuse or sexual violence.

Services include community support, peer mentoring, group work and a free helpline. It also has refuges across the region – which takes in families fleeing abuse and violence.

A spokesperson from IDAS said, “We are very grateful for the incredible support of the Vangarde Centre Management team and John Lewis. The donations of new bedding, towels and gifts will make a big difference to families fleeing domestic abuse who are living in our refuges this Christmas.

“Christmas can be a lonely time when you are away from family and friends, having left everything behind to reach a place of safety. These donations will not only make people’s stay in refuge more comfortable they are also a show of kindness and support from the community.

“We are overwhelmed by the generosity of the donors and have already passed the donations on to families in our refuges. Thank you to everyone who donated.”

Debs O’Donnell, Centre Manager at Vangarde said: “We are always pleased to support local charities, but we know that IDAS works really hard to keep families safe from domestic abuse – not just at Christmas but all year round. I’m proud of our team, along with John Lewis, who always pull out the stops to help local causes.”

For more information about IDAS and the work they do in York and across the region, visit the website here: idas.org.uk

The IDAS North Yorkshire Helpline: 03000 110 110

The IDAS Sheffield helpline: 0808 808 2241