Shoebox gifts to show Ukraine we care

Published: Tuesday September 27, 2022

Two boys stand in front of a lorry door. Inside the lorry, cardboard boxes are packed as high as the roofChildren leaving church primary school across the Diocese of Gloucester collected and sent over 500 shoeboxes filled with gifts to children in Ukraine over the summer, as well as donating £800.

Every year, hundreds of Year 6 children from the 116 church schools within the Diocese of Gloucester attend special services at the Cathedral to celebrate coming to the end of their primary school education.

Kerry Geddis, Principal Advisor in the Education Team for the Diocese of Gloucester, said, “We aim for the Cathedral leavers’ services to be a great opportunity to celebrate and thank God for all that is good and special about our school leavers and the school communities they have been a part of. We also want to encourage our young people to be outward-looking, being courageous advocates for others who are faced with difficulties, injustices, or challenges.”

The children wanted to support the Christian Aid – Ukrainian Humanitarian Appeal and decorated 508 shoeboxes with prayers, messages and hearts, as well as filling them with gifts. They built them into a symbolic Wall of Hope during the Cathedral service.

Volunteers from the Gloucester Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church of the Good Shepherd collected the boxes and sent them out to Ukraine.

Kerry said, “We have all been touched in some way by the terrible atrocities happening in Ukraine, which are leading to great pain and suffering. The diocesan Education Team is immensely proud of the generosity of our schools. We continue to hold Ukraine in our thoughts and prayers.”

More information about ways to support the Ukrainian Humanitarian Appeal can be found on their website.

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