Pensioners launch charity shoebox appeal

John and Margaret Willemsen

John and Margaret Willemsen

First published in News

A COUPLE from Grove are running their 14th annual Christmas shoebox collection for Eastern Europe.

John and Margaret Willemsen, both 74, have been helping to get aid to the poverty-stricken region since the fall of the Soviet Union in the late 1980s.

This year they are asking people in Wantage and Grove to fill shoeboxes with basic goods such as toothpaste, soap, shampoo and gifts for each family member.

The gifts are delivered to the poorest families in Albania, Bulgaria, Moldova and Ukraine and Romania.

Many in the region live on one meal a day and toiletries are an unaffordable luxury, especially in the winter when fuel for cooking and warmth is essential for survival in temperatures down to -25C.

Mr Willemsen, father-of-four and grandfather-of-10, said although the economic climate had improved in the past 25 years, many families were still in need.

He said: “We would be delighted to receive anything people can donate.”

Shoebox leaflets containing a list of all the recommended items are available from Mr and Mrs Willemsen on 01235 798875.

Leaflets are also available from the Cornerstone Coffee Shop, Savile Way, Grove, where shoeboxes can be dropped off.

Completed shoeboxes should be handed in by Wednesday, October 29, at the latest.

  • Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone's contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.

Send your Letter to the Editor

11:20am Monday 28th July 2014

What do you think? We welcome letters from our readers on a wide variety of subjects and you can send us a letter through the blue headline above.


Our top stories

New: Get Oxford Mail news alerts sent direct to your phone via Whatsapp

Oxford Mail: Whats App logo

11:50am Tuesday 3rd June 2014

OXFORD Mail readers can now sign up to get major breaking news alerts sent direct to their mobile phones with a new service using Whatsapp.

Set for a battle of Blenheim over 1,500 homes plan

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Tuesday 9th September 2014

RESIDENTS in Woodstock have vowed to “fight until the bitter end” against plans to build up to 1,500 homes east of the town.

Delays of up to 40 minutes on bus services across the county

Oxford Mail: Traffic Alert general

9:00am Tuesday 9th September 2014

STAGECOACH Oxfordshire has warned that passengers face delays of up to 40 minutes this morning.

Harassment cop sacked for gross misconduct

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

8:30am Tuesday 9th September 2014

A DETECTIVE has been sacked after harassing a member of police staff, the force said yesterday.

Fears as boat owners’ group claims new area of riverbank

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Tuesday 9th September 2014

RESIDENTS say they are worried about another attempt by boat owners to grab land alongside waterways in the city.

Mum cleared of breaking baby daughter’s leg

Oxford Mail: The Horton General Hospital, Banbury

6:30am Tuesday 9th September 2014

A TEENAGER accused of breaking her baby daughter’s leg broke down in tears as she was cleared yesterday.

Comments

Post a comment

Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this post’ link.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree