GIFT BOXES to troops in Afghanistan and clothes to the homeless in Iraq will be shipped over after Worthing residents responded to two appeals.
Worthing Lions sent parcels to troops spending Christmas in Kabul training the Afghan army, while schools around the town donated 50 boxes of winter clothes to be sent to Dohuk, in northern Iraq.
Marion Down, of Worthing Lions, said: “The troops’ parcels are just one of the many services Worthing Lions provide to the community each year.
“With support from the public and various individual organisations, the Lions can continue to make life a little bit more comfortable for some.”
The Lions’ boxes contain requested items such as toothpaste and toothbrushes, soap, pens and sweets, as well as letters written by schoolchildren.
The troops are from the 3rd Battalion of The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment, made up of men and women from the southern counties.
Mrs Down added: “Although much publicity has been given to the withdrawal of British troops from Afghanistan, little has been mentioned of the fact that our forces will remain to train the Afghan Army and also in a security support role for the foreseeable future.”
The clothes being sent to Iraq were collected by Ali Beal, on behalf of Brighton-based Samara Levy.
Students from Our Lady of Sion and Thomas A Becket first and middle schools took part.
Mrs Beal said: “It is a pretty bad situation in Iraq, with hundreds of thousands of people having been displaced, with nowhere to go.
“I was reading recently that ISIS had forced thousands of people out of their homes. The lorry of clothes will go to one of the affected areas.”
Mrs Beal thanked schools, children and parents for helping with the appeal, as well as volunteers who have been sorting the clothes.
A few unsuitable items – including a onesie adorned with a USA flag – will not be making the journey, however.
The appeal still needs a range of winter clothing to fill two lorries, which will help around 800 people.
For more information and to donate, contact Samara on 07960 937716 or email firstname.lastname@example.org