Please help us make a difference on International Women’s Day with Project Shoebox

Project Shoebox returns for #IWD2019

29 January 2019Josie Klafkowska

With just 6 weeks to International Women’s Day 2019, we’re once again launching our drive for donations to Project Shoebox.


This year, International Women’s Day calls for a more gender-balanced world with the hashtag #BalanceforBetter. Although the campaign will run for the entire year, Friday March 8th, marks the kick-off for action groups, activists, businesses and communities, all taking part to redress the balance.

#BalanceforBetter addresses all areas of life from business, to government, the world of sport, media, wealth and more. We’re focusing our efforts, through Project Shoebox, on women who are the victims of abuse, poverty and mental or other health issues. We’re working with the charities that provide shelters and refuges for them in our local communities - London, New York, Poznan and Bydgoszcz - to provide these women with some basic home comforts.

What is Project Shoebox?

Project Shoebox was the brainchild of a Cognifide colleague, who decided to declutter her bathroom cupboards one year, taking unopened toiletries, gathered on various business trips, to a local shelter. Fast Forward four years and Project Shoebox has snowballed. In 2018 it became the first ever all-office charitable initiative for Cognifide. We delivered over 400 boxes to refuges and shelters, reaching out to women across our communities.

The concept is simple. With the help of colleagues, WPP sister agencies, clients and other local partners, we collect toiletries and every day essential items, pack them into - yes, you guessed it! - shoeboxes, and distribute them, via our partner charities to local shelters on International Women’s Day.

This year we aim to make it even bigger and better!


How can you help?

The success of Project Shoebox depends entirely on donations. There are a couple of ways in which you can donate. 

There will be donations bins in Cognifide offices throughout February and until March 8th. If you too would like to declutter the bathroom cabinet, please bring any unwanted - and unopened - toiletries, cosmetics or personal care products with you when you visit. They will be gratefully received.

To make it even easier, we’ve also created an Amazon wishlist featuring the products that we need to create our Shoeboxes. Please take your pick, all products will be delivered directly to Cognifide offices where we can ensure they get distributed into boxes.


What do our charities say about Project Shoebox?

Last year, the CEO of Hestia, our charity partner in London spoke about what Project Shoebox means to them and the people that they help.

For many women and children escaping an abusive relationship, having to leave in a hurry means that they often arrive at our refuges with little more than the clothes they are wearing.  It is often the simple things that we take for granted, like having a toothbrush or shower gel, which can result in women returning to abusive homes. With the generosity of the staff at Cognifide, these women can begin to feel like themselves again and recover from the trauma of domestic abuse.

Please help us to make Project Shoebox a huge success this year and make a small difference in the global campaign to #BalanceforBetter on International Women’s Day.

If you’d like to talk to us about partnering on Project Shoebox or just to learn more about how you might help, visit our website, or get in touch by email.


Author: Josie Klafkowska
Published: 29 January 2019

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