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All Saints' supporting Project Shoebox Oxford 2015

posted 23 Nov 2015, 10:50 by All Saints' Highfield   [ updated 5 Feb 2017, 09:34 ]
Project Shoebox Oxford is a project that one of our congregation started last year, together with a friend, and we are happy to support their efforts this year. 

Last year they collected unwanted basic toiletries, as well as some nice extras, and put together gift boxes for women spending Christmas in a domestic abuse refuge run by the Oxfordshire Domestic Abuse Service (ODAS).  It was their way of supporting the woman, and sometimes her children as well, in their desire to start a new life without fear of physical violence from an abusive partner.
This year they have been asked to extend the collection to include helping new people with food welcome packs as well as gift boxes of toiletries.  Normally the refuges keep supplies of non-perishable food to give out to women when they arrive, all of the refuges have full kitchen facilities, yet they often have no supplies left in their biggest refuge, that is things like UHT milk, tea, coffee, sugar, cereal, dried pasta, tins etc.   Some of the projects have support from food bank services but not all, and the food bank doesn’t always have staple items. They often have clients with no recourse to public funds, so as those people have no benefits they rely on donations and limited social care funding. ODAS wrote: 
“We really are grateful for any support we get to help meet the needs 
of our clients, the simple things like a bottle of shampoo and tea bags are 
actually really helpful.”

In discussion with the vicar, the Rev. Jim Cocke, they have come up with three ways All Saints can help Project Shoebox Oxford this Christmas. 

Firstly, there will be a collection of goods in Church at the 10am service on 
Sunday December 6th (the week after the Christmas Bazaar). So if you have 
any unwanted and unused toiletries or dry goods, this is a chance to donate 
them to people who would welcome them.  

Secondly, the vicarage will be accepting donations from Monday November 30 to Monday December 14th from members of the public as well as members of the congregation.  There will be a clearly labelled box in the porch for any donations.  

Thirdly, there will be two ‘Packing Parties’, in Church House, from 7-9pm on Wednesday December 9th and Wednesday December 16th.  This is an opportunity for anyone who wishes to help get involved by sorting and packing the items received. 

For full details of the items that will be collected please see the article in November's Church Magazine