SANTA arrived early – in the form of Huddersfield entrepreneur Graham Leslie.
He and his firm Babyway International Ltd have donated a staggering £40,000 worth of baby and toddler products for Christmas.
And that means hundreds of young parents – many of them just teenagers – will get a great festive present.
They will be given equipment ranging from strollers and pushchairs to baby bottles and potties.
The distribution is being handled by family groups and children’s centres across Kirklees.
Serial philanthropist and local entrepreneur, Graham is now a professor at the University of Huddersfield.
He said: “I am a dad and a granddad and I understand how crucial it is for babies to get the best start in life.
“Having babies at any age is tough, but when you are still very young yourself the impact is much greater.
“Many teenage families often struggle emotionally and financially, and are unable to provide for their newborns in the initial few days, as well as the following months and years.
“This is the time of year for giving, so we want to help those families in Kirklees and ensure that their children are getting the best possible start.
“We hope our gifts will reduce the strain and enable young parents to provide better care for their little ones, and allow them to look forward to the festive season.”
Clr Cath Harris, Kirklees Council Cabinet member for Children’s Services, said: “We are delighted to work in partnership with a local company and would like to thank Babyway International for their generosity.
“This helps us to support the health and wellbeing of local parents, children and families.”
Babyway International Ltd specialises in baby and toddler products that are essential in the safe upbringing of children, ranging from items for the nursery, bath time, feeding and potty training, as well as baby monitors and travel-related products such as pushchairs.
The products will be given to many family groups across the region including Auntie Pam’s in Dewsbury, Family Nurse Partnership, Talk-Thru, New Beginnings, Homestart and Sure Start Children’s Centres.
They will then distribute the items to needy young parents, as well as other local family organisations.
Although the majority of the products will be given to parents under the age of 18, many other families across Kirklees that are under financial strain during the economic downturn will also benefit from the goods.