GENEROUS East Lancashire residents are being asked to donate gifts for the occupants of refuges for those fleeing domestic violence.

SafeNet Domestic Abuse and Support Services is appealing to supporters s to show extra kindness this Christmas by donating small items that will bring cheer and goodwill into the lives of women and children in refuge, and men living in safe accommodation over the festive period.

Part of Burnley's social housing provider The Calico Group it operates several safe houses near the town and across East Lancashire and the North-West including Jane’s Place – a specialist refuge for those with complex needs escaping domestic abuse named after Barrowford’s Jane Clough murdered by her abusive ex-partner as she arrived for work at Blackpool Victoria Hospital in 2010.

Last Christmas, SafeNet refuges and safe houses were full throughout Christmas and New Year, accommodating 94 women, 60 children and two men.

This year’s appeal is for small gifts which SafeNet can then make up into ‘Christmas Eve Boxes’, one for each resident and child in refuge.

SafeNet is asking for pyjamas and nightwear for all ages and sizes; bed socks and slippers; dressing gowns;toiletries and toiletry gift boxes; and well as Christmas chocolate treats and sweets.

Helen Gauder, managing director at SafeNet said: “It’s not easy living in temporary accommodation and being away from loved ones over the festive period. Your donations really do bring some happiness at what can be a very difficult time. We do all we can to help those living in refuge enjoy Christmas and welcome in the New Year and new beginnings.”