The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

Boxed: the student-run charity project for the homeless

Boxed UoM needs your help this Christmas with its shoebox initiative

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Boxed UoM is a new charity project that aims to help address the problem of homelessness in Manchester by donating essentials and other gifts to the ever-growing number of people sleeping rough in this city.

Ross Collington and Georgina Bullen, the students behind this innovative project at the University of Manchester, started up this charity as a way of giving back to the local homeless community this Christmas.

Each shoebox should contain around seven items from a list provided by the students, including: toiletries, non-perishable food, and clothing items (which must be of a sellable nature if second-hand). The aim is to spend between £7 and £10 on each box if possible.

They realise that packaging boxes may take some time, so individual items are welcome as well as any cash donations via the Boxed UoM Go Fund Me page. As of the 30th November, £310 of the £350 goal has been raised.

Boxed have teamed up with a few local charities, including Barnabus and Mustard Tree, who will be responsible for distributing the donations made. Barnabus, a Christian homeless charity, aims to deliver their boxes at their Christmas Dinner on December 6. Mustard Tree, an organisation aiming to combat poverty and prevent homelessness, will be open for donations until December 15.

Boxed have also teamed up with The Closet in aid of the local mental health charity Manchester Mind. Their shop on Oxford Road, between the University of Manchester Students’ Union and Academy 1, is accepting donations too. This will spread awareness of the mental health issues that are partially responsible for Manchester’s homelessness.

To promote the project, Boxed took to the Students’ Union on November 28 from 9am onwards, selling Krispy Kreme donuts and vegan food items to get students involved.

There is a collection box in the Owens Park reception in Fallowfield, which is open until December 15. The Go Fund Me page online is also open for donations 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Ross told The Mancunion: “We know as students how tight money can be towards the end of the semester. But anything you can give, be it a box, item, or some money, will help us make a difference this Christmas.”

For more information, please visit the Boxed UoM Facebook page.