Entering its fourth year in Vancouver, the Canada-wide charity Shoebox Project for Shelters is collecting shoeboxes filled with small luxuries to give to women in shelters this holiday season.
The shoeboxes are filled with various items women may not have access to, or the means to purchase during a difficult time. Items such as lotion, hair care, makeup, and other personal care products are included with the aim of brightening the days of women living in Vancouver’s shelters.
“Christmas can be a hard time for women and their families living in poverty…” says Pamela Lang of the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre. “Women at both our drop-in centre and overnight shelter are touched by the thoughtfulness of kind people who put so much effort into decorating their shoeboxes and choosing items they think will be well received. The Shoebox Project is integral to our Christmas gift program and we appreciate the thoughtfulness that goes into every little box of love.”
If you’re interested in donating your own shoebox, it’s suggested that the total value be approximately $50. Recommended items include:
- Nice socks, gloves, scarves, or hat
- Compact (travel) umbrella
- Rain ponchos
- Gift cards in $10 or $20 denominations (coffee shops, drug stores, movie theatre, grocery stores)
- Anything chocolate or candy
- Full bottles of personal care products – a nice lotion, body wash or scrub
- Hair brushes, ties, clips
- Simple jewelry: earrings or bracelet
- High-end razor (e.g. Venus)
- Face pads/cleansers
- An inspirational card or note in the box
The theme of the 2015 Shoebox campaign is #LoveWhatsInside. As part of the campaign, The Shoebox Project invites donors to submit a brief video demonstrating what’s inside their Shoebox and how they hope it will make a difference for a woman experiencing homelessness. A selection of these clips will be featured in The Shoebox Project’s 2016 promotional campaign. Participants can submit videos online and also post their photos and videos to social media using the hashtag #LoveWhatsInside.
The Vancouver Shoebox drive runs until December 12 with a goal of 800 boxes being delivered via eight shelters this year.