Shoebox Project a success once again

Campbell River has done it again!

Thanks to the generosity of many people in our community, over 250 women in Campbell River who are homeless or at risk of homelessness will enjoy gifts of personal items this holiday season.

Beautifully-decorated Shoeboxes filled with little luxuries were recently delivered to Campbell River and North Island Transition Society, downtown winter weather shelter, Radiant Life Church, Salvation Army Evergreen House, Campbell River Women’s Resource Centre, AIDS Vancouver Island, Salvation Army Lighthouse Family Services, Homeless Outreach Program, Opportunities Advocacy Services Centre, Immigrant Welcome Centre, as well as Campbell River Public Health  and Laichwiltach Family Life Society.

The shelters, outreach agencies and women really appreciated receiving the gift filled Shoeboxes from the community.

“This box was amazing. I think everyone deserves to feel the spirit of Christmas and this is an incredible way to share it,” said one of the women who received a shoebox.

It takes many giving members in the community to see The Shoebox Project for Shelters, Supported by Dream succeed like it has.

Coordinator Alison Skrepneck thanked everyone who filled Shoeboxes with personal items and little luxuries for the women, those who donated extra items, the dedicated volunteers who helped sort and decorate Shoeboxes and helped in other ways, and those who helped promote the project this year.

Several businesses helped collect items for the Shoeboxes this year: Vital Roots Wellness and Payless Shoes.

Three businesses served as drop-off locations for collecting the Shoeboxes once again: Coastal Community Credit Union in Discovery Harbour, Serendipity in The Garden and Sundance Java Bar.

Dan Samson provided a commercial space for storing and sorting the Shoeboxes, All in One Party Shop provided tables during the project, and Dr Lethangue donated dental supplies.

In order to meet the goal of 250 Shoeboxes this year, the campaign deadline was extended and the folks in Campbell River responded!

The Shoeboxes valuing more than $12,500 were distributed to women who accessed shelter or outreach services as well as other women in need in the community. This was the fourth year for the project in Campbell River.

For women who have been displaced from their homes and estranged from their families, the holidays can be a particularly challenging time. Often, women feel disconnected from society, invisible and alone.

Reducing the feelings of isolation and loneliness faced by women living in shelters or in poverty is one of the most important outcomes of The Shoebox Project.

A Shoebox gift is a powerful reminder for a woman that she has not been forgotten and that she remains a valued and respected member of her community.

For those giving gifts, The Shoebox Project is an opportunity to give back to someone in your community. It’s a small gesture of kindness that has an immediate and positive impact on the woman who receives it.

The act of creating Shoeboxes tends to bring people together and works to give a human face to the broad issues of poverty and homelessness.

When a person makes the effort to assemble a gift for a woman living in a shelter, it brings to mind the challenges she may be facing and the many obstacles to overcome.

The Shoebox Project for Shelters, supported by Dream, collects and distributes gifts in the form of shoeboxes to women who are homeless or at high risk of homelessness. Each Shoebox is filled with items valued at 50 dollars that any woman is likely to enjoy, but may not splurge on for herself in difficult times.

Founded in 2011 by Caroline, Jessica, Katy and Vanessa Mulroney, The Shoebox Project now delivers 25,000 gifts annually to hundreds of communities across Canada and the US. For more information go to www.shoeboxproject.com

Thanks again Campbell River for your generosity and support!   Watch for info next fall when The

Shoebox Project will be back again.

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