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This online forum helps strangers save Christmas for children in need

It’s a Reddit Christmas miracle.

WITH TRAFFIC OF over 90 million people per month, social news and entertainment site Reddit calls itself “the front page of the internet” for good reason.

Reddit, for those uninitiated, is essentially laid out in a bulletin board system. The site is further divided into subreddits, which function as distinct and separate forums based on topics and themes.

One such subreddit, entitled Random Acts of Christmas, bills itself as “a place where families can request assistance for their children at Christmas or offer assistance to those in need”. The subreddit’s stated aim is to get 5 presents to each child posted about.

Source: Reddit

The users in need submit an image to verify they really do have children in need of assistance, along with a link to an Amazon wishlist of items and toys their kids would like on Christmas morning. Most posts indicate that without the help of the Reddit community, their children would not be receiving anything at all.

Source: Reddit

Secret Santas can send children Christmas gifts by ordering them online, and also send families in need of gas or electricity money some help to see them through the season. In 2012, the subreddit brought in $57,110 (€41,756) in gifts for children – and moderators say that 2013 is looking similarly bright.

One user, halimane or Holly, posted about how her severe back pain due to scoliosis left her unable to work, and without any Christmas presents for her two young girls. She specifically requested clothes for her children, but added she would love for them to be able to open “a toy or two”.

From the responses to her post, you can see that the Reddit community came out in force, emptying her wishlist – even asking her to add more things so they could continue to help her family.

I can’t even think of the words to express my excitement! Remember mom crying her eyes out at any heartwarming tv show or even commercial? That’s me right now, on the verge of tears every time I think of all these generous people!

Not only do Redditors help out people who ask, but plenty of users also volunteer unprompted. One user, 4xCharmed, was behind one such “offer” post – saying he and his wife will pay for “the whole shebang from dinner down to presents” for one family, or two if they can afford it.

See? The internet can do wonderful things. Excuse us, we’ve just got a little something in our eye.

Read: The 12 Smells of (Irish) Christmas>

Read: Dublin driver wins Christmas with fully-decorated tree… on his truck>

About the author:

Fiona Hyde

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