Recognised for Operation Christmas Child efforts

Alexandra Hall

Alexandra Hall

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A Douglas woman has been congratulated for overseeing the collection of more than 300 shoeboxes packed with gifts for Operation Christmas Child.

The Barclays Wealth employee has dedicated her own time over the past six years to organise the collections of gifts for children in the poorest nations around the world.

Miss Hall, who this year was assisted by her sister and Barclays colleague Felicity, said: ‘I have been organising Operation Christmas Child through work since 2008.

‘In 2012 I decided to collate money donated by colleagues and buy the products myself, then pack and wrap the boxes. I did this because when I received feedback from my colleagues as to why they hadn’t donated a shoebox in previous years, it wasn’t because they didn’t want to help, it was because they struggled to find the time to complete it.

‘I worked out that to fill a box costs about £10 and the postage and packaging was £2.50, so I started collecting £12.50 each from as many colleagues as were willing to donate, then I used my weekends and lunch hours from September to October to bulk buy all the presents, pack and wrap the parcels.’

She also made use of cardboard waste at work, cutting down the boxes that the office paper is delivered in to a shoebox-style size and shape.

Since 1993 Operation Christmas Child has seen more than 100 million children in 130 countries have received a parcel packed with presents.

Alexandra said: ‘My mum first told me about this charity and explained how little these children have, and how much these shoe boxes mean to them, they even keep the actual shoebox as storage. She told me about one of the times the charity had gone out to visit the children and found two little girls living in the freezing cold. One of the girls had received a shoebox the previous year with a pair of gloves; she had given one glove to the other little girl so that they each had one glove each to keep one hand warm. This story is what really hit home with me.’

Simon Scott, island managing director at Barclays Wealth, said: ‘I’d like to congratulate and thank Alexandra on all her efforts supporting this very important charity project. She has given up her own time to ensure her colleagues are able to support he appeal, and that many, many children around the world have had something to smile about.’

Caption: Alexandra Hall with Christmas presents she collected and wrapped on behalf of colleagues for under-privileged children

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