Your Shoebox Stories (2018)

Last year we sent a fantastic 264,636 Christmas Shoebox gifts to children across Eastern Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa. Here you can read the stories from some of the children, see what your Christmas shoebox gift really means to them and how it can impact their life – bringing joy, happiness and hope to their lives.

Your Shoebox gifts were sent to twelve countries, from as far across Eastern Europe in Belarus to deepest parts of D.R. Congo in Africa. For more photos and stories of the joy you helped create do please read on, or click here to read or print out a short report on last years campaign

Luka, Albania

Luka though all his birthdays and Christmas had come at once, the day he got his shoebox gift.

He loved the Santa hat that he found in the shoebox.

Luka, like many other children, had never got a present before and his big smile said it all!

Deborah, Burundi

Deborah and her brother could not wait to open their shoeboxes with all the special gifts.

‘Thank you very much to the children that thought about us when creating them’.



Igor, Ukraine

Igor was ecstatic to receive his shoebox because it was the first Christmas presents he had ever received. He could not believe all the amazing gifts inside were for him and he smiled from ear to ear the whole way home.

Vlad, Belarus

Vlad, is 13 years old, He lives in a state orphanage and he is moving to a foster home in February. He is passionate about football so he was thrilled to find a football, a matching shirt and shorts in his shoebox. We went outside in the snow to play with his new football and he couldn’t stop smiling because he was filled with pure delight.


James, Malawi

‘You are like a second parent to my child’ – James’ mother.

James just kept smiling, he was so happy to wear his new hat and sunglasses he received in his shoebox. His parents are extremely grateful to the Irish who sent these gifts.


Yuliya, Ukraine

Yuliya loves nature, insects and animals. She was overjoyed to discover her very own pet bee in her Christmas shoebox. She named him Buzz and said she will bring him everywhere with her, so she will be buzzy!

Gali & Alain, Dr.Congo

Gali and Alain are best friends and they were extremely excited to receive their shoeboxes because of all of the new, fun games they can play together.

Their big smiles say it all!

Mado & baby Tina, Dr. Congo

Mado was delighted with the shoebox for baby Tina because she cannot afford to buy any presents for her.

These are the first presents her baby has ever received. She is delighted to have some new clothes, toys and some basic necessities to make life easier for them.