Welcome to Boxes of Hope, Cumbria, the humanitarian aid charity which gets local communities together with the common aim of helping deprived children in Eastern Europe.
Since the early 1990s children and communities in Cumbria have been involved in the shoebox project, and since 2005 a team of local volunteers has become firmly established, co-ordinating the effort in South Cumbria, Furness and Eden, with support from some areas of north Lancashire who choose to join with us. We are grateful also for help from people all round the country who send us donations of money or knitted garments. Each year we send thousands of brightly coloured, gift-filled shoeboxes to bring some magic into a child’s Christmas.
Our boxes of hope may well be the first gifts the child has ever had. Each box contains basic hygiene and educational supplies, as well as small toys and games, and it carries a message of hope, love and compassion to a child who has had none of the opportunities we have had.
Until 2012, our shoeboxes were sent under the umbrella of other charities. In 2012 we set up our own Charitable Trust: Boxes of Hope, Cumbria, Charity Reg. No. 1153106. As a local charity, we harness the support and generosity of community spirit which is a feature of our area. We have no staffing costs and, with having so many personal contacts, we are able to cut back operating costs to the bare minimum, so that children gain maximum benefit from the donations we receive.