Leeds supports Operation Xmas Child

This is the sixth year in succession the society has taken part in this national initiative, run by Samaritan’s Purse, and all 65 of the mutual's UK branches will be collecting shoeboxes from members of the public from this Thursday, 1st November, until 18th November 2012.

Operation Christmas Child is the world's largest children's Christmas project, and has been running since 1990. Over the past 22 years the charity has delivered 94 million shoeboxes to children in over 100 countries.

In 2011, over 1.1 million shoeboxes were sent from the UK to disadvantaged children in countries around the world. Samaritan's Purse is hoping to deliver their 100 millionth gift-filled shoebox during this year's Operation Christmas Child campaign.

Paul Kaye, Leeds's general sales manager, said: "We think Operation Christmas Child is a brilliant project that we recommend others to be part of. The shoe boxes not only assist the children that receive them, but also help our colleagues and members feel part of something bigger that is helping others.

"I am delighted that our strong national branch network is helping Samaritan's Purse in their aim to reach their 100 millionth child this Christmas."

Simon Barrington, executive director of Samaritan's Purse UK, said: "We are delighted that all Leeds Building Society branches will again be acting as drop off points. All people need to do is find an empty shoebox, decide if it's for a boy or a girl, and fill the box with simple items such as toys, educational supplies and hygiene items. Once they have made the £2.50 donation and dropped their shoebox off at their nearest Leeds branch, our regional volunteers will ensure the shoeboxes get to where they need to go.

"Although we are pushing hard this year to deliver the 100 millionth gift-filled shoebox, for me it's always about the individual children; every box counts and has the potential to make a massive difference in children's lives."