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Christmas Shoebox Appeal - Students from Villiers School in Limerick and schools across the county have been assembling gift boxes for those less fortunate. Christmas Shoebox Appeal - Students from Villiers School in Limerick and schools across the county have been assembling gift boxes for those less fortunate.

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UPDATE: Limerick Christmas Shoebox Appeal bound for Romania

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Christmas Shoebox Appeal – Students from Villiers School in Limerick and schools across the county have been assembling gift boxes for those less fortunate.

UPDATE: Limerick Christmas Shoebox Appeal bound for Romania

By I Love Limerick correspondent Rachel Petticrew

Team Hope Shoeboxes packed and ready to depart the Cleeves factory, bound for Romania.

6,000 Team Hope Christmas shoeboxes will leave the Cleeves factory tonight, November 25, bound for Romania.

A truck packed with the gifts will travel 3,500 kilometres to its destination, where the shoeboxes will be handed out to impoverished children.

Limerick’s Team Hope Christmas Shoebox Appeal coordinator, Michael O’Connell, says, “This year our consignment is being sent to Romania, which has the highest rate of children at risk of poverty in the EU. We are amazed by the generosity of Limerick people again as this year, despite the challenges that schools have with Covid-19, we have received 6,000 boxes”.

A team of volunteers will load the enormous volume of boxes into the Team Hope truck tonight, November 25, on what is a very special evening for the appeal each year.

“The Christmas Shoebox Appeal puts a smile on all our faces every Christmas. We are delighted this year to have been able to support the appeal by making the Cleeves site available,” says David Conway, CEO of Limerick Twenty Thirty who took ownership of the Cleeves site in 2014.

 

Limerick Shoebox Appeal hopes to reach 6,000 children this Christmas

By I Love Limerick correspondent Rachel Petticrew

Christmas Shoebox appeal The old Cleeves factory has been a hive of activity in recent weeks as the Team Hope Limerick Christmas Shoebox Appeal enters full swing.

The old Cleeves factory has been a hive of activity in recent weeks as the Team Hope Limerick Christmas Shoebox Appeal enters full swing.

The old Cleeves factory has been a hive of activity in recent weeks as the Team Hope Limerick Christmas Shoebox Appeal enters full swing. 

Part of a nationwide project, the Limerick base hopes to send 6,000 shoeboxes containing gifts for children to developing countries across Africa and Eastern Europe. 

Schoolchildren across the county have been assembling gift boxes for those less fortunate, and Limerick people are welcome to do so too.

Limerick Christmas Shoebox Appeal coordinator, Michael O’Connell, tells I Love Limerick what each shoebox should contain. 

“We recommend putting in the four W’s – something to wash with, such as soap or a toothbrush, something to wear, something to write, and finally the ‘wow factor’ – perhaps a teddy bear or a toy,” says Michael. 

“Some extras, such as sweets, are also welcome. As the boxes are going to warmer climates, donors should avoid including chocolate.”

Shoeboxes will be warmly welcomed at the old Cleeves factory, North Circular Road, on weekdays from 10am to 9pm until Thursday, November 25. 

Co-ordinator Michael, who has previously distributed shoeboxes to children in Albania, speaks of the joy these inexpensive, simple gifts bring to lesser fortunate children. 

“It really warms your heart to see a child’s smile and response to getting a gift all of their own, often for the very first time. It’s lovely to see the appreciation they have for simple things like toothpaste, a toothbrush or a copybook. To feel that you have been part of that is a joy,” says Michael. 

The Limerick man believes that Irish children who gift a shoebox also benefit from doing so. 

“Parents constantly tell us that their children really get a sense of how fortunate they are,” explains Michael.

“They think about all the things they get for Christmas, and here is another child who’s delighted just to get a toothbrush. The shoebox appeal educates children about the realities of the developing world.”

For more information on the Team Hope Christmas Hamper Appeal, go HERE 

For more charity stories, go HERE 

Christmas Shoebox Appeal

Michael O’Malley (centre) Limerick 2030 Project Manager and Michael O’Connell (left), Co-Ordinator Team Hope Limerick Christmas Shoe Box Appeal, helping out volunteers L-R Chris Fahey Ahane, Veronica McDaid, Parteen, Latia Brown, Clonlara and Yvonne O’Donnell, Cratloe, packing up shoe boxes at the former Cleeves factory on The North Circular road/ O’Callaghans Strand in Limerick City. Picture: Arthur Ellis.

Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the ilovelimerick.com concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.

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