RAF Cranwell staff collect 395 boxes of gifts for needy children

The Cranwell team with the shoeboxes they have collected.

The Cranwell team with the shoeboxes they have collected.

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Underprivileged children in Belarus will receive presents this Christmas thanks to service and civilian personnel at RAF Cranwell.

Staff at the base have donated 395 gift-filled shoe boxes to Operation Christmas Child, which is run by the Samaritan’s purse.

Flt Lt Jenny Growcott, Sgt Dashwood-Simpson and Cpl Jenny Watson collected boxes from colleagues at Cranwell, as well as youth groups like the Brownies and from the village primary school.

Initial Officer Training cadets donated £1,300 and the Station Charities’ Committee provided £500 which went towards purchasing toys, sweets, toiletries and stationery for 250 boxes.

Jenny said: “Despite the recession people at RAF Cranwell have been so generous with their donations and it has meant that this year we have collected more boxes than ever.

“Thanks must go to the children and adults, Shoe Zone of Lincoln, Clarks of Sleaford and the many stores who were involved in supporting our undertaking.”

Operation Christmas Child is run by the Samaritan’s Purse for children in Eastern Europe, Asia and Africa suffering through war, poverty, natural disaster and disease.

PHOTO: The team from RAF Cranwell hand over their boxes to Mike and Rowena Ward-Barrow of Samaritan’s Purse.