Boxed is a charity campaign set up by Manchester University students Ross Collington and Georgina Bullen whose aim is to provide shoeboxes filled with gifts for the homeless during this festive period.
The new project has been launched in an attempt to tackle the issues of homelessness in Greater Manchester.
Ross Collington expressed the aims of the charity stating, “Were not looking to raise hundreds of thousands of pounds, were not looking to distribute hundreds and hundreds of the boxes but what we are really trying to do is make that difference”.
The target is to spend £7-£10 on each wrapped shoebox, with donations being used to help build each box, in order to make sure the majority of the Greater Manchester homeless community receive a special gift this Christmas.
Students plan to fill each box with atleast seven items from the list with the most convenient items being toiletries, clothing items and food.
Homelessness is a continuous problem in Manchester. The graph below shows the number of people in 2015 who may have been homeless or threatened with homelessness.
Boxed are working with other local homeless charities Barnabus and The Mustard Tree who are responsible for sharing out the boxes. On Wednesday 7th December, over 50 boxes were distributed at Barnabus’s annual Christmas dinner.
Established in 1991, Barnabus is a local Christian homeless charity which originally started with a single man walking the streets of Manchester offering out food and drink. 25 years later, the charity offers weekly support to 600 visiting homeless people.
Boxed will also be teaming up with student charity shop ‘The Closet’ which donate all proceedings to local mental health charity, Manchester Mind.
Boxed also aims to increase the awareness of mental health issues closely associated with the problems surrounding homelessness in Manchester. Manchester Mind states how they focus on, “Improving the lives of people with mental health needs. We promote the health and well being of people affected by mental distress and take a positive approach to mental health, challenging stereotypes and discrimination”.
The charity has gone from strength to strength. On 25th November, Boxed announced they had achieved their first ‘Go Fund Me’ target by raising over £250.
Students have been promoting their charity at the University’s student union where they were able to collect donations whilst selling donuts and vegan treats.
As of the 8th December, the charity has now smashed their fourth target by raising over £500 with only one more week to go before the deadline on 15th December.
Ross Collington has explained why you should get involved stating, “We are a charity that’s not trying to accomplish the biggest goals in the world, were trying to make as much of a difference as we can”.
You can either fill an entire box or contribute individual items.
Keep up to date on social media by using #boxeduom