Rotherham College Level 3 Childcare student, Abbie Fitzpatrick, has always had an interest in raising money for children ever since she took part in the Christmas shoebox appeal at her school and church as a child.
During her Childcare course this year she was asked by her tutors if she’d be interested in arranging and taking charge of their November charity project, as it was something Abbie was passionate about and had expressed interest in the year before.
Abbie chose to do the project through the Samaritans, a well-known charity organisation who help anyone needing support. The students chose to take part in Operation Christmas Child, by doing the Shoebox Appeal, where the shoeboxes filled with presents are sent all over the world to children who otherwise wouldn’t get anything for Christmas.
Many students from all levels across Childcare at the College got involved, including Rachel Briggs, who worked alongside Abbie to make the project a success. The students helped to arrange a tombolo, raffle and bake sale to raise money for the shoebox donation. Their goal was to raise five pounds per box to cover the packaging, shipping and other costs.
The fundraising continued for about two weeks and they managed to raise £180 along with a contribution from North Notts College. Their deadline for donations was Friday 10th November and they sent 36 shoeboxes to the Samaritans on Monday 13th November for distributing.
Abbie commented “I think fundraising for people who don’t have much teaches you to not be selfish and to give something back, even if it’s just helping pack the boxes. It’s a massive contribution, I’ve enjoyed it, and although it’s been stressful arranging everything, it is worth it.”
Abbie is planning to make the Christmas Shoebox project an annual tradition for the Childcare department. Her goal is to complete the Level 4 course at Rotherham College, once she finishes her Level 3, and hopes to become a permanent member of staff at Bright Skies Nursery in Dinnington where she is currently working as a RES Temporary Nursery Officer when she can.