FROM the bottom of our hearts, a massive thankyou.
Since the Courier started its shoebox campaign along with Calderdale Rotary clubs, you have packed 1,800 shoeboxes to send to needy children across Europe.
For the last five weeks you have collected boxes from our 10 participating businesses and supermarkets. Within hours the first shoebox had been returned and the buzz continued until the last few days.
We have packed our boxes ready to be shipped and hundreds were loaded on to pallets to be shipped from a warehouse in Exley.
The boxes will then be taken to Preston before they shipped across Europe.
They will be given to children who have never owned something of their own, and never had a Christmas present.
Originally 1,000 flat-packed boxes were delivered to The Courier offices, but more had to be ordered and thanks to your generosity that number was almost doubled.
Boxes were packed by scout groups, councillors, youth clubs, businesses and individuals to name just a few.
Shoebox co-ordinator Bryan Harkness said: “The quality of the gifts both bought and donated is fantastic and will result in a great number of smiling faces this Christmas.
“In these times of some hardship at home, it is humbling that so many of you have the capacity and willingness to help others in countries many hundreds of miles away. We, the British people, have always been ready to dip into our pockets in an almost spontaneous way to respond to the plights of those less fortunate than ourselves and on their behalf Rotary says thank you.”
He also thanked the businesses across Calderdale who acted as drop-off and collection points.
Courier Editor Tim Robinson said: “The response from readers has been nothing short of phenomenal and I would like to thank everyone who has donated.
“To get so many boxes back shows the true generosity of Calderdale people – and it’s been a pleasure to run the campaign with the Rotary clubs.
“Many, many children will receive a ray of sunshine when they receive these much-needed gifts and that really is remarkable,” he said.
Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland has over 55,000 members in 1,855 clubs. To find out more about them, call Bryan on 07770 471698.