Many people have discovered The Shoebox Project as the right fit for their charity of choice during the holidays.
In Simcoe County and Grey, it is led by Shannon Murree and a team of volunteers who want to make sure women and girls who are homeless or at risk of being homeless are not forgotten about.
“Even at the worst of times, it is always a challenge to be alone,” said Murree, a Barrie realtor. “But to find yourself having this challenge, certainly during the holidays, can be even more frightening and disenchanting.”
Like previous years, people contribute $50 toward the building of a shoebox that is stocked with gifts as well as handwritten notes or words of encouragement. Murree said it’s important for these women and girls to know they are special and not forgotten.
Businesses, schools, individuals, families and others contribute to the success of the Shoebox Project. Murree mentions the Barrie Sharks and Mapleview Public School as examples. There are also VIP curated shoeboxes that have been done by the likes of Kim Cattrall and Michale Buble that can be purchased by going to the organization’s website www.shoeboxproject/chapters/simcoe.
This holiday season, Murree said the charity has received about 500 shoeboxes, as well as financial donations. The organization has dropped off shoeboxes to places like the Women and Children’s Shelter of Barrie, Youth Haven, the Canadian Mental Health Association, and The 705.
There is little downtime once the holidays are over. The Shoebox Project then gears up for Mother’s Day. So, if you didn’t get around to contributing this season, there will be another opportunity in the spring.
“Everybody is really having some challenging times right now,” said Murree. “This has been such a really community-building initiative.”
Images provided: The Shoebox Project/Simcoe County and Grey