Christmas is a time of joy and celebration but for those living on the breadline, Christmas can emphasise the difficulty of their circumstances. For the past 18 years, Three Rivers Vineyard Church (previously Truro Vineyard Church) have been collecting Christmas dinner boxes to give away through Cornwall Council’s Social Services team to those in need. Jesus taught us to feed the poor and hungry, and this us trying to do that.
In 2012 we felt challenged to expand the Christmas Box appeal to the broader community, wanting to help as many people as possible. We collected just over 200 boxes in 2014, 120 in 2015, and 257 in 2016. In 2017 we had a target of 300, or 500 if you asked Heather. We thought she was being ambitious – but you all donated 540 boxes in total, so she was right!
For 2018, we collected almost 1,000 boxes, which were distributed to hundreds of families in need, across the length and breadth of Cornwall. And last year we collected a whopping 1200 boxes. Once again, we were blown away by everyone’s generosity. There are no words!
We are unashamedly, a Christian charity, we don’t have any preferences for where the boxes go, or where they come from. In fact we don’t directly distribute the boxes ourselves, we rely on partners in Social Care, Food Banks and other 3rd party organisations that already have contact with people in need. We don’t add anything to the boxes that you donate, our only aim is help feed as many hungry people as possible.
Find out more: 3 Rivers Vineyard Church
Each box contains enough food for a family of 4 – 6 to celebrate: Christmas dinner with all the trimmings, treats like mince pies and biscuits, and of course Christmas pudding all go into the box to make up a feast for a family in need. A typical box costs around £30 but you can share the cost by getting together with friends, neighbours and colleagues to fill a box together. The boxes will be distributed by Cornwall Council’s ‘Children’s Early Help, Social Care and Psychology Service’ team to families in need. Visit the website for the shopping list of items to include, collection points and more.
Christmas Box 2020 is happening!
As we reach the end of one of the craziest and most challenging years, the number of people that need help has grown exponentially. Christmas Box HQ is going full blast again this year, and we have been blown away by Cornwall’s generosity, we really live in a beautiful place with beautiful people. There have been some challenges to make sure that we do it as safe a way as possible for people involved. But we believe that we have to help as many people as we can again this year.
For the last couple of years, there has been such an amazing response to our Christmas Box appeal. You have been absolutely incredible at responding to the need here in Cornwall, to help feed families. We’ve gone from collecting approximately 100 boxes a few years ago to over 1200 boxes last year. This is fantastic, thank you!
Thank you to everyone that has got in touch and offered their time, their vehicles and expertise to help us this year. You guys are amazing!
3 Rivers Vineyard Team