FSCI is asking the public to get involved with helping some of Southeast Europe’s poorest people through its Christmas Box Appeal, which it is taking over from The Trussell Trust.
Christmas boxes are put together by people in the UK. Each is made by wrapping a shoe box in festive paper and filling it with small gifts such as soap, stationery, gloves, hats, toys and sweets. The boxes are distributed to orphanages, poor Roma communities, women’s refuges, refugee camps, prisoner’s children, poor rural schools and kindergartens and isolated elderly or disabled people in Bulgaria and Serbia. For many, this will be the only present that they receive this Christmas. Last year a record 11,724 Christmas boxes were donated by individuals, schools, churches, businesses and community groups in Salisbury, southern England, Wales and the Midlands.
FSCI Operations Manager Rich Parsons says, “I was privileged to run the Christmas box appeal for many years on behalf of Trussell Trust and I’m delighted to be able to continue with FSCI. The name may be changing but the project remains the same.” Rich adds, “The response to last year’s appeal was stunning and we hope lots of folk will want to get involved again this year. Your presents spread a great deal of joy and send a really encouraging message to people who live in extreme poverty. Many of the people we visit live with the risk of exploitation by people-traffickers and other criminals. For them to receive a Christmas box shows that there are people who want to bless them, not use them. That’s why we’re asking everyone who gives a shoebox to tell a friend about our appeal. If everyone helps out in this way we can brighten many more Christmases!”
Would you like to make a Christmas box?
FSCI’s new online system for making Christmas boxes is up and running. This gives the option for supporters to make a donation for the transport costs of their box via the FSCI website. This will cut down paperwork for FSCI’s admin volunteers and the amount of cash that goes into the boxes.
Completed Christmas boxes can be taken to:
- The Trussell Trust/FSCI offices at 6b Ashfield Trading Estate, Salisbury SP2 7HL – deadline Fri 24th Nov
- Trussell Trust’s shops in Salisbury and Bournemouth – deadline Thurs 23rd Nov
- Coventry foodbank – deadline Fri 17th Nov
- Brent foodbank, London – deadline Fri 17th Nov