Contract Compliance Consultant, Emily Ralph, shares her experience of using her Grovelands charity day to help Link to Hope with their Shoebox Appeal initiative.
Link to Hope was established in 1991 and is dedicated to rebuilding people’s lives and communities in Eastern Europe; countries include Moldova, Ukraine, Bulgaria & Romania. Their aim is to help the poorest communities through education and social care.
One of the main projects the charity runs is the annual Shoebox Appeal which involves creating shoeboxes filled with toiletries, clothing, toys, games, stationary, winter woollies and other practical things. The boxes are then wrapped in festive Christmas paper to be given as gifts to people in these countries. The shoeboxes are catered for families or the elderly and volunteers for the charity travel to these communities in December to personally deliver the boxes.
My mum has been involved with the Link to Hope charity for the last 15 years so this year I decided to use my Grovelands charity day to help her. I spent the day sorting through the supplies we had bought and collected, in addition to the many items that had been donated by our neighbours, family and friends.
They were then divided equally into 20 different boxes – there were 16 family and 4 elderly shoeboxes. Each shoebox was then individually wrapped and a label was attached to each one clearly stating what was in each box. We dropped the boxes off at our local warehouse which is based in Worthing on Park Road (there are lots of local warehouses, simply visit their website to find your nearest one).
The staff at the warehouse were really friendly and told us about their visit to Eastern Europe last year when they delivered the boxes. One gentleman explained how this small gesture had made a big difference, especially during the Christmas period.
It’s a great thing to do and even contributing just one shoebox will make a difference to a family or elderly individual.
As a benefit of working at Grovelands employees are entitled to take an extra day off work to volunteer at a charity of their choice.