Shoebox appeal brings out the Christmas spirit

Shoebox appeal brings out the Christmas spirit

By Maurice Garvey

OVER 100 kids in Ballyfermot have exemplified the Christmas spirit by donating toys and goods to needy families for the festive season.

Youngsters in the C&S Variety Group in Cherry Orchard, took part in the Inner City Helping Homeless Christmas Shoebox Appeal, in an effort to make life a bit better for the homeless community in the city centre.

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Over the last few weeks, the children created their own Christmas boxes, with many using their own pocket money to purchase gifts for those in need.

Samantha O’Reilly, a parent of a child in C&S Variety Group, said she heard about the appeal, and youngsters in the group “took to it straight away” when it was discussed at their weekly meet-ups in St Ultan’s National School.

“You hear terrible stories at this time of the year, and a Christmas present might be the only good thing that a person in need receives,” said Samantha.

“Often, we buy too much at Christmas, and we decided to put that into this appeal. One of the kids used all her piggy bank money for her shoebox present.”

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C&S Variety Group were started 15 years ago by a local family, the Shorthalls, and are currently run by Ciaran Shorthall and his sister Lauren.

The group cater for kids aged 3-21 and train once a week at St Ultan’s on a Saturday from 11.30am to 6.30pm – doing a wide performance of variety arts including dancing, drama, and contemporary art.

Over 20 members of the C&S Variety Group will appear in the Aladdin Cheerios Panto at the Tivoli Theatre from December 13 to January 22.

“You need to be really dedicated and put in a lot of time for the panto, but whenever we have a show coming up, the kids train often and are really dedicated,” said Samantha.

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