A MARTIAL arts academy in Wangara is collecting donations for the Smith Family Christmas Toys and Gift Appeal for children.
West Coast Aikido Martial Arts Academy has participated in fundraisers for the Smith Family for the past seven years as well as donating to other charities throughout the year.
Owner and principal instructor, Ross Taylor said giving was the best form of therapy and paying it forward helped contribute to making life better for others.
“I was very fortunate that I had a good upbringing,” he said.
“We were not poor; we were just your average working-class family, with parents who worked hard to feed us, make sure we had a good education and a home to come back to.
“Many kids these days don’t have the same opportunities that we did.
“Statistics show that there are over one million kids living in poverty in Australia right now.
“In a country like ours, ‘the lucky country’, with so much wealth and opportunity I find these figures to be deplorable.
“I implore all businesses to get involved in some form of charity and give back to the community, especially the kids because they are our most vulnerable.”