Bringing joy to forces families at Christmas

Military Shoebox appeal'Launching the shoebox appeal for military families are,from left,Gary Smith,Kathryn Duck,Jennifer Herrington,Mick Herrington,Heather Leak and Stephen Bradshaw.'Picture by Neil Silk  124018'03/10/12
Military Shoebox appeal'Launching the shoebox appeal for military families are,from left,Gary Smith,Kathryn Duck,Jennifer Herrington,Mick Herrington,Heather Leak and Stephen Bradshaw.'Picture by Neil Silk 124018'03/10/12
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A Scarborough scheme is appealing for people to bring Christmas cheer to forces families by filling a shoebox with gifts for children.

The Shoeboxes4kids project is back for a second year after proving successful in 2011.

The idea of the project is to help make Christmas extra special for children whose mum or dad will be away serving in the armed forces during the Christmas period.

Last year the scheme collected in over 100 shoeboxes, which were delivered to Catterick Garrison to be distributed to families.

Organiser Kathyrn Duck said: “Rather than clogging up the mail to our font line troops, we would like to deliver shoe boxes to those children who have a parent who will be serving away over Christmas.

“In 2011 we were overwhelmed by the generosity of local people and businesses who donated gifts and boxes.

“We delivered 105 boxes of gifts to Catterick Garrison. This year we would like to do more.

“We have already spoken to Catterick Garrison and this year they have more troops who will be away for Christmas and therefore more children who will be without a parent for Christmas.

“We are also working with Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association (SAFFA) Forces Help to provide more forces families with gifts this Christmas.”

Kathyrn added: “Please remember that these boxes are for the children of our service personnel and not adults.

“Therefore all boxes will be checked to make sure they are suitable for the age range and no inappropriate products are sent out.”

Organisers are looking for donations which can be split into shoeboxes, such as small gifts, toys, games, sweets, socks and gloves, for example.

Donations of wrapping paper and tape will also be gratefully received.

Kathyrn also has posters which she can provide to businesses or organisations to display on their premises if they would like to support the campaign.

For more information, or to arrange a collection, please call 07732 064678 or email shoeboxes4kids@btinternet.com.

Donations can also be left at the Toy Shop in St Thomas Street at the Royal British Legion Club in Bar Street.

The last day for collecting will be December 3.