With 27 charities in this year's campaign, the number of beneficiaries has more than doubled, due to the generosity of the donating public. 'Operation Santa Claus continues to go from strength to strength and we are constantly thrilled with the generosity of spirit shown by our readers,' said South China Morning Post marketing director Amanda Turnbull. 'Many past beneficiaries have told us that the publicity we generate for them during the campaign in print, digital and on-air formats is often longer lasting than the money we raise. 'With that in mind, we've come up with five themes for this year's campaign. Under these themes we have no less than 27 different beneficiaries - so we are working with more groups than ever before. Within these 27 groups we hope readers will find a cause they want to support, something they feel passionately about.' A delighted Blondi Kwok Ming-chau, community and hospital play manager of Playright Children's Play Association, one of the beneficiaries this year, said: 'I think it's good, because it will serve the children with renal disease.' One of the charity's projects is to help children with renal disease who have long stays in hospital, often while waiting or recovering from a kidney transplant. They help them with games and handicrafts, to ease the pain and keep them busy. 'I think it can raise the public awareness of the play needs of the children,' said Ms Kwok. Marcia Aw, executive director, of the Changing Young Lives Foundation, said: 'We're proud and thrilled to be part of Operation Santa Claus.' The organisation will use the money to fund a project to help young basketball players to improve their career opportunities.