A Swadlincote tattoo studio is bringing Christmas joy to the homeless on the streets of Burton with a shoebox appeal.

Nomad Tattoo and Retails, which is based on the high street in the Derbyshire town, will be collecting shoeboxes filled with treats and resources which could be life-changing for the homeless.

The boxes are similar to those collected by charity Operation Christmas Child, who collect boxes of small toys, toiletries and items of clothing for disadvantaged children around the world.

Instead of sending the boxes around the globe, the materials will be handed out to the homeless in Burton and residents living at the YMCA in Burton’s hostel rooms, which help rehabilitate those who fall on hard times.

Anybody interested in donating a shoebox must do so by Thursday, December 14, by taking it into the Swadlincote tattoo studio, which is running the charity event for the first time.

Katie Foster, who works at Nomad Tattoo and Retails, is the main organiser at the studio for the shoebox appeal and said: "At Nomad Tattoo and Retail, we are like one big family with our staff, clients and customers and we feel that it is so important to give back to our local community whenever possible.

"We chose Christmas time to ask people to donate boxes for the YMCA because it is a time when we believe that everyone should know they have people that care about them.

"We would love for as many people as possible to donate a box so that we can hopefully bring a smile and some Christmas cheer to everyone who needs it."

Katie and Adam Foster outside of Nomad Tattoo and Retails
Katie and Adam Foster outside of Nomad Tattoo and Retails

Organisers are encouraging generous people to fill boxes with toiletries, hygiene products, clothing including hats, scarves and gloves and even some Christmas-themed treats. Also accepted will be easily accessible and non-perishable foods, ideal for anyone living on the streets.

Paula Senior, the fund-raising officer at the YMCA in Burton, said: "We were delighted to hear that Nomad Tattoo and Retail wanted to get involved with supporting homelessness, our clients and people in need this Christmas.

"They wanted to be able to give something to those in need and thought it would be lovely if they could receive something just for themselves. Christmas is not a happy time for everyone and can be a very lonely time for many people.

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"Their Christmas box appeal is great and they want to encourage their customers, local people and businesses to get involved by filling a box with essential items such as toiletries, food items and maybe a treat or two.

"We want to thank everyone who has made a donation or is supporting Nomad to make this happen, and of course to the Nomad team for their idea and support."

Anybody interested in finding out more information about the scheme or donating a shoebox can do so by heading to Nomad Tattoo and Retails, on the high street in Swadlincote.