Shoebox Project at ORESTA

This holiday season, ORESTA is thrilled to once again be participating in The Shoebox Project in support of abused women living in Ottawa shelters. 

Last year, The Shoebox Project delivered gifts to over 17,000 women living in 270 shelters and outreach programs in 72 communities! We will be collecting shoeboxes at all 3 ORESTA locations until December 6th. 

As part of Giving Tuesday we will be hosting a Shoebox Making Party on Tuesday, December 1st 6-8pm, at our gallery location, 137 Beechwood Avenue. Please bring your shoebox, $50 of gifts for the box and an inspirational message or card. We will provide the gift wrap and ribbon.

Here are some helpful tips from the Shoebox Project on how to turn an empty shoebox into a gift:

1. Decorate your empty shoebox

If you don't have a shoebox, you can go to a shoe store and ask them if they have an extra one. Please do not use boot boxes are they are too big and we want all the gifts to be uniform.  You can also purchase decorated boxes at Winners or a dollar store.

Wrap or decorate the lid and bottom separately so that it can be opened for inspection. If you have trouble, watch this tutorial.

 

2. Fill your shoebox 

Make your shoebox as fun you would like! Choose items you would like to receive yourself.  In general, we ask that donors be mindful of possible allergens and not include products with nuts. We also ask that donors do not give razors. 

Some shelters are scent free, which is why we don't always accept perfume as gifts. However, many of our shoeboxes contain perfume and it makes an excellent gift for women in shelters that allow it!

We inspect every box before sending it out to make sure that each shelter gets boxes that are within their restrictions.

Please check your city page to see if there is a list of specific items. If not, please use this list as guideline.

Please DO:

  • Wrap the lid and bottom of the shoebox separately
  • Include only new and unused items
  • Use a regular-sized shoebox
  • Remove the price tags
  • Include items that total about $50

Please DON'T:

  • Don't wrap your box shut - it must be opened and inspected before distribution
  • Don't use an over-sized box
  • Don't include items totaling a value of much more or less than $50 (so that all women will receive similar gifts

What to Include:

  • Something warm: mitts, scarf, hat, socks, specialty teas
  • Something sweet: nut-free chocolate and candy (not alcohol-filled
  • Body or hand lotion, soaps, toothbrush, toothpaste, flosh
  • Brush, comb, shampoo, conditioner
  • Nail polish, mascara, eye shadow, lipstick
  • Purse-sized Kleenex, small cosmetic bag
  • Gift cards (Tim Horton's, Shopper's, etc.) PLEASE WRITE THE AMOUNT OR INCLUDE THE RECEIPT
  • Bus tickets
  • Supportive message

What to Leave Out:

  • Used goods
  • Hotel Samples
  • Sized clothing (i.e. S, M, L, XL)
  • Mouthwash containing alcohol
  • Candles
  • Foundations, concealers
  • Hand-sanitizers
  • Razors
  • Jumbo-sized containers
  • Books other than self-help or inspirational
  • Anything opened or not package
3. Write an Inspirational Message
Women who receive a gift from The Shoebox Project are touched by the effort that goes into decorating the shoebox as well as the special cards, messages, and poems contained inside. Get creative and have fun!

4. Drop it off

You can drop off your decorated shoe box at any of our three ORESTA locations until December 6th: ORESTA apothecary, 1121 Wellington Street West, ORESTA confectionery 464 O'Connor Street or ORESTA gallery 137 Beechwood Ave.  

Please ensure that the lid and the box are wrapped separately so that they can be quality checked before being delivered to the shelter. If they are wrapped, they will need to be unwrapped, checked and then rewrapped.

 


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