Lead SALead SA

'The love that goes into Santa Shoeboxes keeps blowing us away'

Written by: Paula Luckhoff

The Santa Shoebox Project is one of the country's most beloved charities, which explains why it's distributed more than 850,000 Christmas gift boxes to children throughout South Africa, and Namibia, since its inception.

CEO Debbie Zelezniak says even in tough economic times it's viable because people know how it works and are able to plan, for instance taking advantage of back-to-school sales already at the beginning of a year.

Another drawcard is that donors create their own personalised box of goodies for a specific child which includes essential items as well as treats - toiletries, toys, stationery and clothing.

The love that goes into these boxes (continuing into our 14th year) never ceases to blow us away.

Debbie Zelezniak, CEO - Santa Shoebox Project

We see hand-embroidered facecloths, we see handmade clothing, we see school supplies that set a child up for a year of education.

Debbie Zelezniak, CEO - Santa Shoebox Project

Their system also allows for gifting collaboration, which makes anything possible she says.

If one person can't get an entire box together they can collaborate and create an absolute abundance for these children who would otherwise truly receive nothing at Christmas because of impoverished situations, child-headed households, remote rural villages that don't have an associated donor base...

Debbie Zelezniak, CEO - Santa Shoebox Project

Visit the website to find out more about contributing a Santa Shoebox this season.

Listen to the conversation here:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : 'The love that goes into Santa Shoeboxes keeps blowing us away'




Read next from articles

1000 Women: Encouraging women to share their stories of police station abuse

1000 Women: Encouraging women to share their stories of police station abuse

In the buildup to 16 Days of Activism, 1000 Women launched its own campaign to highlight how police stations are failing women.
Read on...

Lebo Ramafoko will resign from Soul City Institute to make way for new blood

Lebo Ramafoko will resign from Soul City Institute to make way for new blood

The outgoing CEO of the Soul City Institute says she wants to pass on the baton to young women leadership in the country.
Read on...

Dream Higher: Using rock climbing to help vulnerable youth

Dream Higher: Using rock climbing to help vulnerable youth

Lead SA: Margaux Rat talks about harnessing the sport to develop confidence in kids and young adults who've experienced trauma.
Read on...

Customs charges Santa Shoebox project R500 per box for donated goods

Customs charges Santa Shoebox project R500 per box for donated goods

Sars has agreed to look into the matter to see how they can assist in getting the donated goods to the old age home.
Read on...

Christmas comes early for less fortunate children

Christmas comes early for less fortunate children

The Santa Shoebox Project kicked off on 1 August in order to get the boxes to the children early this year.
Read on...

5 local charities to support this Christmas

5 local charities to support this Christmas

You can give back by volunteering your time or by donating cash and resources to these Cape organisations. Help make a difference.
Read on...