Santa Shoebox Project: Decorate your box

@santashoebox #Charity #SouthAfrica #SuzelleDIY

Still wondering how to decorate your box?

Watch Suzelle’s video NOW for some creative ideas and get GOING! Pretoria drop off opens next week, Thursday, so time is short. (If you live elsewhere in South Africa, visit the website at http://www.santashoebox.org.za to find your area’s drop off dates and times.)

REMEMBER your box is also part of the gift. The children tend to keep the boxes and fill them with precious keepsakes. Some of these children have nothing, so that box becomes their own, personal (and secret) treasure box. You may think it is ‘just a box’, but to them it becomes a personal item, something belonging JUST to them.

You have no idea how much your gift changes their lives. It makes them feel special, loved and worthy of another person’s attention and care. There simply are no words to describe what it means to them.

REMEMBER: one box, one life and a world of difference.

Any questions? Complete the contact form below.

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Santa Shoebox Project: the magic 8

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@santashoebox #Charity #SouthAfrica #Magic8

New to giving with the Santa Shoebox Project? Well, listen up, some helpful tips coming your way!

Though not the official ‘codename’, I think ‘magic 8’ will work to describe the 8 compulsory items every box should contain.

These are very basic and, if you are an old hand at Santa Shoebox-packing, you will know that you need not wait until the last minute to purchase these items. They can be added to your monthly grocery list so that you can start collecting them in January. You will also know to keep an eye out for specials throughout the year. In the end, using just your magic 8-collection, you will probably be able to fill quite a number of boxes.

Here is the list:

  • Toothpaste and toothbrush (You sometimes get a set of paste and brush at Dischem at a reasonable price.
  • Soap and facecloth (Soap can be bought in bulk at Makro and you can actually get creative with that facecloth. Over the years we’ve seen ones decorated with the beneficiary child’s name and some have a beautiful little crocheted border.)
  • Sweets (Try to avoid chocolate, as it melts in the SA heat and can make a mess of your entire box. Also, no drinks and remember to pack an age appropriate sweet, like marshmallows for babies.)
  • Educational supplies (Anything from pens and pencils to mathematical sets, but remember to make it age appropriate.)
  • Toys (No guns, not even water pistols, or anything that can be used as a weapon. Also, please avoid religious items.)
  • Clothing (You need not pack an entire outfit, even socks or underwear can be counted as ‘clothing’. Make sure the size of the clothes will fit your pledged child.)

To this you can add whatever you like to fill up your box. Use your imagination and let your own kids become part of the project. Let them write Christmas notes to the child (the kids LOVE that) or have them draw a pretty picture.

Now, the boxes, next week I’ll be sharing a video to help you with ideas on how to cover the box. Suffice to say, for now, make it fun and interesting.

REMEMBER to paste your printed label on the box and do not damage the bar code. That will tell our computers exactly where the box must go, even if the name is lost!

Keep well and happy packing!

If you have questions or queries, please complete the contact form below and we will get back to you ASAP.

BY THE WAY you can print out the image above and paste it on carton. Cut it out and it becomes a little puzzle that you can add to your box!

Santa Shoebox Project: A pledge is a promise

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@santashoebox #PledgeIsAPromise #Charity #Giving

Every year the teams at SSB drop-offs around South Africa are faced with one big problem. So called ‘no shows’. ‘No shows’ are pledged boxes that are never delivered.

You cannot believe the work that teams have to do just to get a drop-off up and running, not to mention doing marketing, sourcing donors, checking boxes, coordinating bulk pledges, ensuring that there are enough ‘fillers’, managing time schedules for volunteers, coordinating transport of cartons and planning celebrations. (Fillers are the compulsory items which are often forgotten by our enthusiastic donors. During ‘box checking’ these items are added to the boxes). Fortunately our magnificent teams have all this down to a science and things usually run very smoothly.

Unfortunately, we always have to deal with ‘no shows’. I want you to consider this for a minute: imagine you are promised something and you look forward to receiving it for months, only to realize that you are not going to get it after all. Every year we are faced with that problem. How do you tell an innocent child that the promised gift will not be delivered, because a donor couldn’t manage to make good on his promise to pack a box? It is simply not possible. That is why it is the team’s responsibility to ensure that every child on the pledged list get a box. We pack boxes ourselves and use our ‘fillers’ to do so. You may think that it is just one or two boxes, you are SO wrong. Sometimes it is hundreds of boxes.

So, while I am encouraging you to become part of the phenomena that is Santa Shoebox, to do your little bit by pledging a box, I also beg of you to make good on that pledge. A pledge is a promise. Not to us, but to a child. A child that has never received a Christmas gift in his life. We work closely with facilities like daycare centres and orphanages to plan their Santa Shoebox gifts. It is not as if it will be a huge surprise to them, they are expecting to receive boxes. The beneficiary facilities usually help plan celebration days and these events become the highlight of the year. The children are prepared well in advance for this spectacular day and are sometimes even part of it by performing dances or singing. Can you imagine the disappointment if we have to cancel it all because the boxes were ‘no shows’?

If you think you will NOT be able to fill a box with the necessary items, then you should not pledge one. You can still bring joy to the children by volunteering your services or donating ‘fillers’ if you can afford it. I know that times are tough. The economy is in a downward spiral and few people have the financial resources to give to charity. Some people may even feel that they need some charity themselves! Just, please, do not make a promise you cannot keep.

As I mentioned, you can still be involved without spending money. Volunteer to help at drop-off or join the team when they hand out the gifts during celebrations. No one will think less of you if you just volunteer, you are, after all, still giving. You are giving your time to bring joy to others.

REMEMBER: you don’t have to fill the box to the brim. While we do appreciate it and the children are, of course, thrilled by all the lovely items inside, the compulsory items will suffice.

These items are:

  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Soap and facecloth
  • Sweets
  • Educational supplies
  • Toys
  • Clothes

For those of you who pack boxes and drop it off on time, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. To the children you are angels from heaven, bringing brightness to their dull lives. You are doing something that the child will remember forever.

You are indeed making a difference.

If you have any questions or queries, please do not hesitate to get in touch by completing the contact form below.

If you would like to pledge a box or volunteer now, please visit http://www.santashoebox.org.za and register online.

‘The little Optimist’: Your purchase, our gift

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@santashoebox #TheLittleOptimist #GregBertish

Purchase a copy of The Little Optimist and a Santa Shoebox beneficiary child will receive a copy for free! Save the date to meet Greg Bertish at the CTICC on Saturday 11 November, and have your copy signed.

https://tinyurl.com/y75cw6e3

SOURCE:

Santa Shoebox Project on Facebook.

Santa Shoebox Project: be part of the magic

#SSB2017 @santashoebox

One week into pledging! Have you done yours yet?

Why not get your colleagues, school or business to do a bulk pledge? Want to know how? E-mail me at: ilzehallidayfoundation.sharon@gmail.com.

Look at these lovely boxes from Camps Bay High and be inspired.

Via #SantaShoeboxProject on instagram.com/p/BYxTu4hFAyz/

Santa Shoebox Project 2017: less than 2 weeks until pledging opens

#SSB2017 @SantaShoebox #SouthAfrica #Charity #ShareTheJoy

Are you excited yet? This year we hope to share your generous gifts with ┬ámore than 100 000 children. Here, in our Pretoria region, our target is 8 500 and in Johannesburg, where the latest ‘flagship drop-off’ will open for business in early November, we are expecting 30 000 boxes.

That is an ENORMOUS amount of shoeboxes and therefore I implore you, as our loyal donors, to open your hearts to make all these little kids happy over the festive season.

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The process works as follows:

  1. Visit www.santashoebox.org.za and register as supporter (or click here to go directly to the log in page).
  2. Once registered, you will be able to find your nearest drop-off and select a child for whom you will pack a shoebox.
  3. You will be sent a label with the child’s name and age, drop-off point and room for you to write your name. Print it out and paste it on your box once you’ve finished decorating or covering it.
  4. You have time until the last weekend in October to purchase items and decorate your box.

REMEMBER:

  • If you cover your box with wrapping paper, keep the lid and box separately.
  • You may decorate the box any way you want. Visit Santa Shoebox Project on Pinterest for ideas on box art.
  • Cut out the label in such a way that the barcode remains intact
  • Paste it on the box and make sure you’ve written your name on it.
  • You may add a personal letter or Christmas card to the box.
  • The compulsory items are: toothpaste, toothbrush, facecloth, soap, educational supplies, something to eat, educational supplies and clothing.
  • You can add anything you like to fill up your box, but avoid war toys, waterguns, liquids, chocolate and items related to any religion.
  • When you’re done, replace the lid and secure it with two elastic bands.
  • During October/November you can take the box to your local drop off. Check the website for days and times for when your drop off will be open.

If you need any more information, visit the website or complete the contact form below and we will be in touch.

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Santa Shoebox Project 2017: are you joining us? @santashoebox

Oh yes, people, it is THAT time of year again! I can’t believe it, you know. It seems like Christmas 2016 was just yesterday. But, as they say, time waits for no one.

Are you going to be part of the Santa Shoebox movement this year? If not, I want to challenge you to pledge at least ONE box or give a donation of fillers (I’ll tell you all about that later in this post).

Officially pledging opens on 1 September, but that does not mean you cannot start collecting items for your box NOW.

And while you’re at it, why not encourage your colleagues or business to do a bulk pledge!! You can get in touch with one of our representatives (see here) and even join the team on celebration day. NOTHING measures up to the smiles you see on those little faces!

So why not drop in at the website and register (click here). All you need to fill a box are:

  • Toothpaste
  • Tooth brush
  • Bar of soap
  • Wash cloth
  • An outfit of clothing
  • Educational supplies
  • Sweets
  • A toy

Decorate your shoebox and find your local drop-off point here. Bring to us and we’ll do the rest.

If you are not a South African or Namibian resident, but still want to contribute, you can do so by supporting us financially. Click here to find out how.

For more information on the project, please visit the website: www.santashoebox.org.za or complete the contact form below and I’ll get back to you ASAP.