Maggie-George-far-right-with-colleagues-for-the-shoebox-appeal-campaign.

Maggie-George-far-right-with-colleagues-for-the-shoebox-appeal-campaign.

A specialist midwife counsellor at Epsom and St Helier hospitals is helping to spread a little bit of Christmas cheer this year, by joining a campaign to donate and deliver gifts to children in need.

For the fourth year running, Maggie George has taken part in supporting the Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child campaign, whereby toys and other gifts are donated in shoeboxes to be handed out to impoverished children in the UK, Ukraine and further afield.

Aided by colleagues across the trust, Maggie has already sent more than 50 boxes filled with toys to spread joy and goodwill to children who might not otherwise receive any gifts on Christmas Day. She explained: “The very essence of the Christmas spirit is to spread joy, and knowing that we’re helping to bring happiness to children is just priceless to me. Having spoken to colleagues who have also provided shoeboxes jam-packed with goodies to this wonderful cause, I know that many feel the same way.

“Giving to this campaign is incredibly emotional, especially as you know it is highly likely that what’s inside the shoebox is all that child will receive. This is the fourth year I have co-ordinated this campaign within our hospitals, and I am proud to say that it has been fully embraced at all levels of our organisation. Some colleagues have even involved their own children, getting them to put together a Christmas shoebox for donation.”

Items that can go into a Christmas shoebox include: dolls, stuffed toys, school supplies (such as pens and pencils), a toothbrush and toothpaste, wrapped soap, winter clothing (such as hats, gloves or scarves) and more. To make sure that every child receives something tailored to what they might like or need, every shoebox is individually wrapped and then clearly labelled with an age group and whether the gifts inside are for a boy or girl.

Chief Nurse Charlotte Hall said: “We are all very proud of the effort and time Maggie and staff from across our trust have put in to fill these shoeboxes with such lovely gifts. I am sure that each and every box will absolutely delight the children who open them.

“Maggie’s commitment to the cause and the generosity of our staff is truly inspiring.”

To find out more about the Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child campaign, visit: www.samaritans-purse.org.uk/what-we-do/operation-christmas-child/.