News Shopper launches Operation Shoebox campaign
Could you brighten Christmas morning for a soldier keeping peace on the other side of the world? Reporter ALAN WOODS introduces News Shopper’s Operation Shoebox campaign.
THIS autumn News Shopper is asking readers to get behind Operation Shoebox UK, which is sending shoeboxes loaded with love to British peace keeping forces serving abroad.
For the first time, our offices in Petts Wood will be used to store the presents before they are posted out to the troops.
To show your support, readers are asked to fill a shoebox with treats they think will put smiles on soldiers' faces and deliver it before November 3.
South east regional director at Operation Shoebox, Ellie Doyle, explained: "A lot of soldiers don’t get presents.
"A lot go from the care system into the army and for that reason they don’t have any family or friends back at home.
"So when the post arrives the guys really look out for their post and when they don’t get any it is a crushing feeling.
"We try to encourage people that don’t have any family to register with us so they do get some post.
"It shows somebody back home cares."
The box should be suitable for a male or female recipient and weigh no more than 1.8kg.
A £2 coin should also be fixed to the lid of the box to contribute towards shipping.
Operation Shoebox volunteers will then check the contents of the boxes before they are shipped abroad - predominantly to Afghanistan this year - in time for December 25.
News Shopper editor Andrew Parkes is urging readers to get behind the campaign.
He said: "I think it’s wonderful we support our troops overseas and I’m very keen for News Shopper readers to back the Operation Shoebox campaign this year."
Since the scheme was launched in 2005, more than 55,000 shoeboxes have been sent to troops around the world.
Top 10 items to include:
- Puzzle books
- Notebooks, pens and pencils
- Small tins of fruit juice
- Dried fruit sachets
- Hot chocolate sachets
- Chewing gum
- Toothbrushes and toothpaste
- Shower gels
- Jelly babies, Starburst chews
Items to avoid:
- Bubble bath
- Adult magazine
A completed shoebox should look something like this:
Deliver the shoeboxes during office hours to:
Mega House, Crest View Drive, Petts Wood, Bromley, BR5 1BD