The Muskoka chapter of the Shoebox Project has new coordinators and has gone virtual for 2020.
The Shoebox Project supports at-risk women and women facing homelessness. One hundred per cent of the profits remain local to the chapter, so when you donate to the Muskoka Shoebox Project you’re helping women in your own community.
Jennifer and Sarah Stevenson, a mother-in-law/daughter-in-law duo, have been involved in the Shoebox Project previously and have even hosted ‘making parties’ together in the past. When they learned that the Muskoka chapter would be closing, they knew they wanted to take over running it.
Jennifer, who is retired and living full-time at her cottage, has taken on the logistics and behind-the-scenes role, while Sarah, who has a background in social media marketing, is working to get the word out about this year’s shoebox drive.
Normally, groups would get together and fill shoeboxes with small gifts for at-risk women in the community but this year, due to COVID-19 restrictions, all chapters of the Shoebox Project are collecting virtual donations for the 2020 holiday season.
“This year isn’t about a luxury gift box. It’s about getting women the essentials to survive day-to-day life,” said Sarah. “We feel 2020 is the most important year to support this project. COVID has made life that much harder for at-risk women.”
Supporters can make a monetary donation online or create a ‘virtual shoebox. They also welcome gift cards for stores like Walmart, Shoppers Drug Mart, Tim Hortons, Rexall, and grocery stores—those can be dropped off at Royal LePage offices across Muskoka.
“We understand that some older people [who want to donate]may struggle with the online aspect so we’re hoping family members will be able to assist them,” said Sarah.
Donations and gift cards will be collected until the beginning of December.
“We want to stress that the virtual fundraiser is only happening because of COVID restrictions. For 2021, we’re really hopeful that the shoeboxes will be back in person because we know how much people love hosting [parties to fill them]. It’s so much fun,” said Sarah.
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