RYAN Tubridy has encouraged the public to prove that Ireland is still a country of "kindness and generosity".
The RTE presenter turned out to help launch St Vincent de Paul's Annual Appeal, a charity he has been connected to for nearly 20 years.
Speaking at the event, held at Ozanam House Resource Centre in Dublin yesterday, the father-of-two told of the importance of rallying volunteers and providing donations or gifts to the less privileged during the festive season.
"I do a lot with Vincent de Paul and I particularly love this organisation because I worked with them while I was in secondary school . . . I'd get together with people to put food parcels together," he said.
"This month it's vital that we all help out and give back."
SVP president Geoff Meagher said the organisation spends almost €40m a year on direct assistance – the majority of which goes to helping families with food and education costs.
In the build-up to Christmas, SVP volunteers will in many cases be ensuring children have gifts under the tree.
Tubridy added: "I love children, I love Christmas and I love the idea that Santa gets a helping hand."
There will be special SVP collections nationwide during SVP week, from December 2 to 9.