Skip to content. | Skip to menu. |

Blythswood Care shoebox appeal (October 2019)

Dear Friends

I wonder if, like me, you feel 2019 is flying past? I can't believe it is October already. Every year Christmas gifts seem to be in the shops earlier and I have checked as I write this letter, there are 100 days until Christmas.

Most people don't want to think about Christmas so early. However, I am different as I think about Christmas all year round or should I say I look for items for the Blythswood Care shoebox appeal all through the year.

I first heard about the shoebox appeal 18 years ago when I visited a neighbour; she had a friend working in her garden. When he came to join us for coffee, he told me he was driving a lorry full of shoe boxes to Romania the next day. He told me all about the appeal and gave me a leaflet. I went home and filled my first 2 boxes.

During the next year I talked to family, friends, the head of Horfield School (where I worked) and anyone who would listen and so I became the Shoebox Lady.

Last year Blythswood Care distributed 107,073 boxes in Eastern Europe. I am proud to say I have helped organise over 2000 boxes to be sent to those in need during the past 17 years.

I am often asked how can you be sure the boxes go to those in need? I can answer; they really do. I was pleased to be asked to help distribute boxes in Hungary in 2010. We gave boxes to all the children in a primary school in a deprived area, children in a nursery school, young people with special needs and everyone in a Romany village.

No one was asked about their religious beliefs. It was wonderful to see the smiles when the boxes were opened and the treasures inside were discovered; treasures that seem so small to us; a new hat and scarf, a toothbrush, a small toy, some soap:  they bring great joy to those who receive them.

I was deeply moved by the tremendous gratitude of those who received the boxes, they wanted me to pass on their thanks to all those who had filled a box for them. The people who received the boxes found it difficult to understand why someone so far away would fill a box with gifts for someone they did not know. The realisation that someone cares about you really is priceless. 

I am hoping you will join me to support the Blythswood Care Shoebox Appeal 2019.There is more information in this Newsletter on page 7. I will leave newsletters on the table at the back of the church so that you can read about some of those people who received the boxes last year.

I should like to finish by quoting James Campbell in the latest Blythswood News:

“Time and again I've seen the reaction of children and adults as they discover the gifts that you have so kindly provided for them. Despite the difficulties that they face day-to-day-through poverty, illness, disability
or other disadvantage - receiving a shoebox brings such joy that their faces light up with huge smiles.”

Thank you for your continued support.

Dear friends, since God so loved us, we ought to love one another.

[1 John 4.11]

Carolyn Sims