THE local organiser of a charity which helps put the smile on thousands of children’s faces each Christmas has issued a SOS for premises to be used as a processing centre in Scarborough.
Operation Christmas Child UK sends thousands of shoeboxes full of gifts to kids around the world who otherwise would have no presents to open on Christmas Day.
Last year, 5,500 shoeboxes were sent from Scarborough to eastern Romania after being processed in a temporary warehouse on Sandside by a small army of volunteers.
This year that building is unavailable leaving coordinator Graham Hobson with a familiar problem of searching for a new, temporary home.
He said: ‘People tend to think we use the same building each year but that’s not the case.
‘We rely on the generosity of our local business community to help. We have looked at various empty premises but haven’t been able to get anything fixed up so far.’
The building would be needed for six weeks from the last week in October until the middle of December. It would have to be rent-free although Operation Christmas Child pay utility bills.
Graham said a location in or around the town centre would be ideal where passers-by could join the volunteers in their work.
He added: ‘We want as many people to be involved as possible. Last year we had so many people just walking by who popped in and said they were so glad they did.
‘Somewhere in the town centre of Scarborough would be great for us. We’re even prepared to look at two sites if needs be.’
Hundreds of people and organisations along the Yorkshire coast like churches, schools and shops collect the shoeboxes which are delivered for processing during November.
The parcels are taken via lorry to a destination in Europe and delivered to children, many living in orphanages, on the streets and many in poverty who have nothing.
If anybody can help Operation Christmas Child, Scarborough they are asked to contact Graham asap on (01723) 351317 or 07544 173 798 or email: email@example.com
Operation Christmas Child is part of the international relief organisation Samaritan’s Purse.
Last year almost 700,000 shoeboxes were sent from the UK of which 154,000 were sent to Romania.