APPEAL: Gifts are like ‘love in a box’

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Operation Christmas Child has been going for 26 years. A simple gift-filled box demonstrates our love for needy children overseas. We call it ‘Love in a Box’.

You take a shoebox, cover it in Christmas paper, and fill it with items appropriate for the age of the child – two to four years, five to nine, or ten to 14. Items can include hats, gloves, scarves, toiletries – no liquids, stationery, wrapped sweets and a small toy.

Some do not complete boxes, but give us items. We ask for £3 in the box to help with transportation costs.

In 2015 Operation Christmas Child delivered 900,000 boxes from Britain to needy children, and 4,500 came from Northumberland, 500 up on 2014. This year we are hoping to increase this.

Boxes can be dropped off at Shoe Zone shops in Ashington, Cramlington, Morpeth and Blyth. Schools and churches are also drop-off points.

Drivers volunteer to collect the boxes and bring them to the processing centre where another team checks them.

At present we do not know the destination for our boxes. Last year they went to Romania.

Our processing centre is at Doxford Place Methodist Church in Cramlington. We are grateful to the Rev Adele Moorhouse who has kindly agreed to let us have the premises. We are open Monday to Friday, 10am to 2.30pm, until November 24.

We are always looking for volunteers so if you would like to help, or wish to see what we do, do drop in. We can be contacted on the numbers below.

Carol Nelson and Jackie Rogers

01670 736509 or 01670 713930