Left to right: Marina Hargrave, lead for North Island, and daughter Park Hargrave. (Submitted photo)

Left to right: Marina Hargrave, lead for North Island, and daughter Park Hargrave. (Submitted photo)

The Campbell River Shoebox Project returns again for 2022 seasonal gift drive

The goal this year is to provide 575 Shoeboxes for local vulnerable women

The Campbell River Shoebox Project Local Chapter is encouraging communities to spread joy and kindness through a meaningful gift-giving action.

Nov. 14 is the official launch date for The Campbell River Shoebox Project “Spark Kindness and Watch Her Shine” holiday campaign. The organization encourages community members to create and donate a Shoebox, to host a pre-holiday “Shoebox-raiser”, make a Virtual Shoebox or to make a monetary donation, all in support of local women impacted by homelessness.

The goal this year is to provide 575 Shoeboxes for local vulnerable women; 455 for Campbell River and 120 for Port Hardy/North Island.

Gift filled Shoeboxes valuing $50 will be accepted at the following drop off locations between Nov. 14 and Dec. 7:

In Campbell River – Coastal Community Credit Union (Discovery Harbour), La Tee Da Lingerie (Shoppers Row), or Coho Books (Willow Point).

In Port Hardy – North Island Crisis & Counselling Centre Society (Beverly Parnham Way).

Shoeboxes ($50 value) should include:

$10 gift card to a grocery or drug store;

Shampoo and Conditioner;

Body Wash;

Deodorant;

Toothbrush and Toothpaste;

Socks;

Chocolate/Candy (nut free);

Cosmetics;

A cozy accessory (handwarmers, hat, mitts, scarf);

Skin care item (face cream, body/hand lotion, cleanser); and

Self-care item (journal, lip balm, colouring book).

Go to the Campbell River Shoebox Project website at www.shoeboxproject.com for more information, including what to include and what not to include in a Shoebox gift, as well as how to create a Virtual Shoebox.

The focus of the campaign is to encourage community support for women and gender-diverse people who are homeless or at-risk. This population faces specific vulnerabilities, such as hidden homelessness, domestic violence, and increased rates of poverty and unemployment, particularly for Indigenous women and those with intersectional identities. This year, these risks have been fueled by the record level of inflation, the ongoing housing crisis, and the rising cost of food.

“We are being challenged by a new face of homelessness and its meaning,” says Executive Director Lesley Hendry. “As our organization evolves, our focus is expanding beyond meaningful gifts of kindness to a broader education campaign. Our hope is that a Shoebox gift will not only provide a woman with the strength and hope to carry on, but will also be a powerful vessel to foster equity, challenge stigma and create meaningful change.” ‘

The contents of a Shoebox are worth $50 CAD and are distributed by volunteers via local shelters and community agencies across the country.

“We are excited to be returning to collecting and delivering Shoebox gifts in Campbell River and Port Hary/North Island this year after 2 years of providing gift cards for local vulnerable women during the pandemic,” says Alison Skrepneck, Local Coordinator. “We heard that donors really missed creating the Shoebox gifts the last 2 years and we hope that the hands on experience of creating a special Shoebox gift for a woman who is less fortunate will provide an opportunity for more people in the community to get involved and give generously this year.”

Women in the community who are less fortunate really appreciate that those they don’t even know have created a thoughtful gift just for them. A Shoebox recipient in Campbell River has said in the past, “Receiving the gift makes me feel happy thinking there are people who are kind enough to share their blessings to people like me.”

The Campbell River Shoebox Project has been delivering gifts to local vulnerable women since 2013 in Campbell River and expanded to Port Hardy/North Island in 2017. In 2021, during the pandemic, with donations from the community and help of some additional funding, 433 gifts of Gift Cards (and a few Shoeboxes) valuing up to $50 were delivered to local shelters and agencies; 329 in Campbell River and 104 in Port Hardy/North Island with a total value over $15,000.

The Campbell River Shoebox Project is asking for support and looking forward to bringing the community together once again. For more information on how to create a Shoebox, host a Shoebox-raiser, create a Virtual Shoebox or make a financial donation to the local chapter, please visit the Campbell River page of The Shoebox Project website at www.shoeboxproject.com, or by contacting Alison at 250-203-9360 or by email at campbellriver@shoeboxproject.com. In Port Hardy you can reach Marina at 250-230-7598. You can also text SHOEBOX to 647-560-8832 to make a financial donation. Follow The Campbell River Shoebox Project on Facebook and Instagram.

About The Shoebox Project

The Shoebox Project for Women is an unaffiliated, non-religious, registered Canadian charity with over 45 volunteer driven Local Chapters. The mission of the organization is to share empathy, kindness and compassion with local women impacted by homelessness through the collection and distribution of gift-filled Shoeboxes and messages of support.


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