Locals urged to get on board shoebox appeal
ALLORA resident and community volunteer Allan Darr from St David's Anglican Church is co-ordinating the annual Love in a Shoebox program, part of Operation Christmas Child run by Samaritan's Purse International Relief.
The program aims to collect shoeboxes filled with items to send to some of the poorest countries in the world.
A shoebox gift tells a child in need that they are loved and opens up life-changing opportunities for them, their family and their community.
Every year thousands of children are displaced from their homes by natural disasters, acts of war or poverty.
Christmas can be especially difficult for children who cannot afford their own clothes or hygiene items, let alone a toy or two.
When Cyclone Pam devastated Vanuatu in March, one of the hardest hit areas was Tanna Island where 50% of the homes and 147 schools were badly damaged or destroyed.
Samaritan's Purse provided emergency supplies for more than 30,000 people a month, including the distribution of World Food Programme food parcels while crops were re-established.
This shoebox season it is planned to send 5000 Operation Christmas Child shoebox gifts to bring joy and hope to the children of Tanna Island.
Locally, 40 boxes were collected his year, thanks to the generosity of the Allora and Clifton area Anglican parishioners and district community members.
Sterling community supporters the Scope Club of Allora donated for the gift boxes and freight costs.
Allan extends a most sincere thank you to everyone who supported the appeal and contributed, thus adding to the impressive tally of boxes collected over the past 22 years, and looks forward to an even larger collection in 2015.