Santa Shoebox project to ’give for good’

2015-09-09 06:00
The Santa shoebox ladies, Michelle Barnett (left), Danielle Janse van Rensburg (middle) and Michelle Pagel (right), show off a shoebox gift for a six-year-old child. The Santa shoebox project distributes these gifts to children in South Africa every

The Santa shoebox ladies, Michelle Barnett (left), Danielle Janse van Rensburg (middle) and Michelle Pagel (right), show off a shoebox gift for a six-year-old child. The Santa shoebox project distributes these gifts to children in South Africa every

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FOR 100 000 underprivileged children Christmas will be coming in October this year.

Thanks to the annual Santa shoebox project, children countrywide will be awaiting the arrival of their personal shoebox filled with goodies galore.

The Santa shoebox initiative, which started in 2006, has already distributed 456 000 shoebox gifts to children, aged 0 to 18.

This year, the “give for good” theme will be extending beyond the South African borders, as shoebox gifts will be distributed in Namibia as well.

“These boxes are a treasure to these children,” said Michelle Pagel, the project’s Port Elizabeth co-ordinator.

“They keep the actual boxes for the entire year, because they cherish them so much.”

For this reason, ordinary cardboard shoe boxes have to be beautifully wrapped and decorated to add a thought of personal endearment for these children.

In its nine-year existence, the project has acquired a few sponsors, like Pick n Pay who will be making up virtual boxes this year.

In this way, those who wish to donate boxes, but do not have the time to pack them themselves, can still make a contribution to the Santa shoebox cause.

Michelle Barnett, one of the project volunteers, says the biggest joy of this project is “packing boxes for these children, especially for the older ones. It is a difficult task, but that’s what makes it so much fun, shopping for them and seeing the appreciation on their faces on drop off day.”

Barnett said there is nothing more rewarding than giving back to those who truly deserve it, especially when it is so close to the festive season.

The Santa shoebox website, www.santashoebox.org.za, has been live since September 1 and those who are eager to “give for good” can visit the site for more info.

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