TRURO, N.S. – A few items of need, perhaps a little treat but, always a hand-written note just to show that someone cares.
Specific contents of each package prepared for the Shoebox Project for Women varies somewhat, but these represent what goes into every box that’s distributed.
“We ask that each box have a hand-written note letting someone know they are thinking of them at Christmas,” said Miriah Kearney, owner of My HOME Mercantile store on Inglis Place in Truro.
This is the third year Kearney has served as the Shoebox Project coordinator for this area. The international effort involves collection and distribution of gift-filled shoeboxes to women impacted by homelessness.
The boxes are filled with items, up to a value of $50 each, that include something warm to wear, essentials such as soap or shampoo, something extra special such as skin care products or a journal for them to write in and something tasty or sweet. And, of course, a few words of kindness.
The items for the boxes are donated by individuals or business. Students at Bible Hill Junior High are again involved this year. For the first time, students in grades 5, 6 and 7 at Redcliff Middle School also participated.
“The point of the project is to be collective. That’s where the power comes in,” Kearney said. “It’s about bringing people together. And I think with the students, that was the whole point, that they came together and collected items and built the boxes.”
Locally the shoeboxes are donated to the Third Place Transition House (women’s shelter), the Lotus Centre (women’s resource facility), the Colchester Sexual Assault Centre, Maggie’s Place, the Friendship Centre in Millbrook and the Truro Homeless Outreach Society.
Kearney said early results indicate donations are down slightly this year “but the need hasn’t decreased.”
Anyone who would like to participate in the program has until Dec. 10 to get their shoebox items to Kearney at 10 Inglis Place or call 902-843-5899.