Give while you shop this Christmas

It’s a great feeling to know you’re helping others when doing your Christmas shopping – and shoppers in the North East have really been getting the feel-good factor whilst they choose their gifts, raising almost £1,800 for our charity so far.

Coffee queen, Ruth Oldfield, is the businesswoman who’s made that possible. And she’s hoping more of Children North East’s supporters will join in to push that total over the £2,000 mark.

Ruth, who set up her business, Coffee&Kin, with husband, Mark, six years ago, has just run her first ever online Christmas shopping event, attracting the support of an incredible 1,700 shoppers and 43 businesses.

So far, she’s raised more than £1,774 for Children North East by encouraging buyers to make a donation via JustGiving. Some businesses also donated a percentage of their sales at the event last Thursday. Now she’s decided to keep her Facebook-based Christmas shopping extravaganza ‘open’ along with the JustGiving page so people can continue to shop and donate.

Fancy joining in? Here’s how…


  • The Coffee & Kin Christmas Shopping group will be staying open on Facebook until Christmas. If you’d like to join, please click on this link or contact Coffee & Kin via Instagram or Facebook. Shoppers can continue to donate to Children North East via Ruth’s JustGiving page.
  • For more ideas of how to give while you shop this Christmas, visit our fundraising section here on the website 

“I’m all about helping people”


Ruth decided to stage the online Christmas shopping night from her home in Bolton near Alnwick to lift local retailers’ spirits and improve the lives of children and young people at the same time.

She says: “Running a small business is really tough even under normal circumstances – you’re so often a one-man-band. I’m all about helping people and I just thought everyone needed a bit of a boost because of Lockdown. I wanted to help small businesses and to do something for our customers as well.”

Ruth says:

I think if you do something genuine, people appreciate that and are supportive. People like to help and do good. We have twin 11-year-old daughters and we really wanted to support a children’s charity that helps young people through the various stages of growing up.

The Oldfields began their online business after being introduced to speciality coffee in Australia, by their brother-in-law, who was then a coffee roaster in Adelaide.

“When we got back from our trip to Oz, we didn’t want to drink instant coffee anymore,” Ruth recalls.

“So, we bought ourselves a coffee machine and enjoyed the convenience and taste of pod coffee. However, it just felt so wrong to throw our used plastic and aluminium pods in the bin as I didn’t want them to end up in landfill or our oceans.

“One day, I turned to Mark and said, why don’t we create our own capsule?”

The couple now supply their compostable and eco-friendly pods to Northumbrian B&Bs, holiday cottages and shops. Coffee & Kin also market their capsules; freshly roasted coffee beans and coffee subscriptions through their website and social media.