UNWANTED toys have found a new home with over 12,000 needy children overseas – thanks to kind-hearted Wirralians.
In November the News reported that volunteers from Wirral’s Operation Christmas Child (OCC) campaign were appealing for Barbie and Ken dolls.
Some of the dolls – and shoeboxes filled with other gifts – were sent to youngsters in war-torn or poverty-stricken parts of the world who otherwise wouldn’t receive a Christmas gift.
Others will be given a much-needed makeover ready for this year’s appeal.
The people of Wirral donated 12,391 shoeboxes in total and 10,033 were delivered to Trestioara, Romania.
The remaining boxes were taken to the campaign’s Liverpool warehouse to be distributed to other countries.
Patricia Hardman from Wirral OCC said: “We are already looking forward to 2011.
“As a result of the article in the News we had a number of Barbies dropped off in the warehouse.
“We also happy to accept unwanted Ken and Action Man dolls, which can be given the TLC that is needed to spruce them up.
“For our dedicated volunteers OCC is a year-round occupation.”
When not sprucing up unloved dolls, other OCC volunteers make bags for pencils, jewellery and as fashion accessories.
Others make tiny boxes to put jewellery and other small items in and make hats, scarves and mittens.
All will be added to any shoe box which needs a few extra items.
Patricia said: “We check to make sure that there are no prohibited items such as war toys or food items which might break the importation laws in some countries.
“The “fillers” which are collected and made throughout the year are used to replace these items so that every box is full.
“This is a great time to start collecting gifts – keep a look out in the sales.
“If you buy one or two items a month you will easily have enough to fill a box in October.”
For more information or if you would like someone from the campaign to come and speak to your group, church or school, call Margaret on 07708037969.