Hartlepool school pupils support shoebox appeal to make Christmas special in Moldova

A school in Hartlepool have contributed to the shoebox appeal in time for Christmas.

Friday, 6th December 2019, 11:39 am
Updated Tuesday, 10th December 2019, 12:29 pm
Students Imogen Goy-Stott and Toby Mulvihill, with Matthew Hutchinson, supporting the shoebox appeal.
Students Imogen Goy-Stott and Toby Mulvihill, with Matthew Hutchinson, supporting the shoebox appeal.

The English Martyrs School (EMS) and Sixth Form College have sent 116 Christmas shoeboxes to the people of Moldova.

The shoebox appeal was led by Matthew Hutchinson –a member of support staff at EMS – and ran across the first half term of the new school year.

Working with the charity ‘Link to Hope’, the aim was to get the shoeboxes to the poorest areas of Moldova in time for Christmas.

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The gifts were filled with a variety of items, which included; gloves, scarves, pens, paper, socks, toiletries, and more.

Matthew said: “I always remember really enjoying filling a shoebox every year when I was a student at EMS and wanted to try and revitalise the appeal now I work there.”

English Martyrs have supported various appeals that are similar, but this hasn’t happened for a number of years.

Matthew added: “I launched the appeal and donations were going really well.

“Then I received a donation of 39 boxes from the ‘Mini-Vinnies’ at St Teresa’s Primary school – I was over the moon.”

The Mini Vinnies are a international organisation, the primary school section of the Society of St Vincent de Paul (SVP) – which is a catholic charity with a mission to help those in need in the local community and the wider world, whether that need is friendship or financial.

Olivia Brackstone, a Year 5 student at the Hartlepool primary school and a member of the Mini Vinnie group said: “It was fun to help and good to know that people are going to be happier in Moldova this Christmas time.”

Matthew continued: “I would like to thank all of the students, parents and everyone who supported the appeal this year.

“I would especially like to thank Mary Frain, Headteacher of St Teresa’s Primary, and her Mini Vinnies for their huge contribution.

“I hope to run the appeal again next year so keep an eye out for our appeal.”

The shoeboxes have been collected by the charity and will now be on their way to the village of Cosnita.