Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION

Shoeboxes bring cheer during holidays

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I would like to thank our Charleswood community leaders for their generosity in contributing to the Shoebox Project again this year.   

The Shoebox project was founded in 2011 by four sisters-in-law in Toronto.  The concept is simple — fill a shoebox with items valued at around $50 that a woman would enjoy, but not splurge on for herself in difficult times.  

In 2012 the Shoebox project delivered gifts to 2,700 women in shelters and outreach programs across the country. So in 2013, Eva Whitmore of Winnipeg decided to bring this project here to Winnipeg. She picked three women’s shelters in Winnipeg and had a goal of 100 shoeboxes to fulfil this plan and have a few left over.  

The idea spread like wildfire around the city as various groups decided to get involved with this project. In Charleswood, at our Community Leaders Lunch, we asked people to participate if they desired. We received many wonderful creams and lotions, hats and scarves, gift certificates and more and were able to make up 15 shoeboxes from community leaders. Boxes were decorated, a special inspirational note put inside some, and they were all delivered to the drop off points.

What awesome results! The citizens of Winnipeg came through again! Thanks to all the generous Manitobans who donated shoebox gifts to The Shoebox Project in Manitoba, they received 1,393 shoeboxes.   That’s what I would call exceeding your goal, and many women who would not otherwise have received a gift over the holiday season enjoyed them. They were distributed to over 30 women’s shelters, and organizations that work with women, in 10 communities across the province (Thompson, Flin Flon, The Pas, Brandon, Portage, Kenora, Winkler, Steinbach, Selkirk and Winnipeg).

This year, due to the generosity of our community leaders, we were able to drop off 23 shoeboxes as our contribution. The Shoebox Project just took their last donations this week and at last count, they had collected and distributed over 1000 shoeboxes. Another successful year!  

Merry Christmas and I hope you have a relaxing and peaceful holiday season spent with family and friends.

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