Following a two-year hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Cardiff Rugby’s pathway teams resumed their support of the annual Christmas Shoebox Appeal this month.
Both Cardiff Rugby Under-16s North and South attended the All Nations Cardiff Church with players, parents and coaches all taking part as more than 4,000 shoeboxes were appropriately packed, sealed and loaded for delivery.
The Appeal, which began in Wales in 1990, has now distributed 200 million shoeboxes packed with gifts to children in need around the world and the Blue and Blacks have now taken their tally beyond 120,000 boxes.
The majority of this year’s boxes will head to Moldova for their own under privileged children, while also going to the thousands of Ukrainian refugees, who have fled war.
Cardiff Rugby chaplain Martin Lewis, said: “When we arrived at All Nations there were hundreds of large cartons, which needed splitting down to boxes for boys or girls within three age categories.
“The boys needed to make sure the boxes contained appropriate gifts for the various groups and removed any items, which were not permitted.
“For many children receiving a shoebox is the first time they have received a Christmas present and the boys were soon struck by the importance of what they were doing.
“We had great fun while working hard over the two evenings and checked, packed and loaded over 4,000 shoeboxes, before unloading another trailer containing more than 10,000 boxes.
“Over the 12 years Cardiff Rugby have been involved we have helped check, pack and load about 120,000 shoeboxes! What a magnificent effort so many at Cardiff Rugby have helped accomplish!
“A short talk afterwards was given to thank both squads, coaches and parents for their amazing efforts and remind them of the many, many lives they will help impact for good through their efforts.
“They were reminded that this amazing work actually started here in Wales initially, in Wrexham in 1990 since when 200 million shoeboxes have been distributed to needy children across the world.
“And how what we do in showing love, kindness and compassion to others in great need with a Christmas gift is a mirror picture of the real Christmas story of God’s great love and compassion in meeting the needs of humankind by sending His great gift, a baby to be our Saviour.”