Christmas card competition with a twist: Stars strike a pose with their greetings for African children’s charity

By Helen Le Caplain

Dame Helen Mirren, Darcey Bussell and Ellie Goulding are just some of the celebrities throwing their weight behind a Manchester charity’s Christmas campaign to help African orphans.

PEPAIDS (Peer Education Programme Against AIDS) has launched its annual Great Big Christmas Card Competition to raise funds for orphans and vulnerable children in Southern Zambia.

The charity is looking for people to submit a picture of their wackiest and most creative poses alongside a Christmas card, via Facebook or Twitter, and to donate some money to take part in the competition.

PEPAIDS CEO, and Wythenshawe Hospital nurse, Helen Allen said: “A-list celebrities including Dame Helen Mirren, Darcey Bussell, Ellie Goulding and Olympic gold medallist Nicola Adams have already posed with our card, while Katie Piper has agreed to be our celebrity judge for the competition.

“It’s great fun and an amazing opportunity for us to raise awareness and funds for PEPAIDS’ work with the most vulnerable and orphaned children in Zambia.”

STRIKE A POSE! Darcey Bussell busts out a balletic move

The money will ensure the Growing Futures Project, which equips children with vital life skills, will be able to run for the next three years.

Helen added: “Being a child in Southern Zambia, more often than not, is a harsh reality far removed from our First World existence.

“This campaign is a commitment to the orphans and vulnerable children of Southern Zambia, providing respite and specialised education through camps.

“Growing Futures also works with vulnerable children’s families and communities to kick-start income-generating schemes so they have all the tools they need to help themselves.

“It’s practical, it’s sustainable and it works.”

The PEPAIDS giant Christmas card will be at Bean & Brush Family Art Café in Sale on December 6 from 9am-2pm. 

To enter the competition click here.

For more information about the charity visit

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