Every member of staff has been given £250 to spend at Good Gifts! See our choices here

It is the fifteenth year that IS Oxford have donated to charity through the Good Gifts Catalogue. To date, we have donated just over £88,000 to their charitable causes.

Our annual order always consists of our own personal choices and in addition we have established a library, including termite roof and supply cupboards and books in fourteen poor neighbourhoods in India.

This year we were all given £250 to spend (rather than our usual £200) so we were able to choose higher priced items, which included two members of staff pooling their value and choosing to supply a block of toilets in an African school. This will keep pupils clean and healthy, particularly girls who have to stay at home each month for lack of facilities, therefore missing 10% of their schooling. We also choose to establish two beekeeping co-operatives in developing countries, thus offering a source of nutrition and a welcome source of income.

In addition to the above we chose 43 other different gifts across a wide selection including the supply of a school mother for nine months in South Sudan and Northern Uganda, where obstacles prevent girls’ schooling. A school mother will liaise with families and take girls to and from school, resulting in the drop-out rate for girls reducing by 50%. We also chose to train a nurse in Africa for a year and employ two nursing assistants for a year.   

Some of the more popular choices were to give the gift of sight to twenty-five by supplying a simple operation and a year’s schooling for six children. We have transformed the lives of two Indian street children, nurtured three abandoned children and equipped four children for school. We have supplied six villagers in Africa with solar lamps, which are heathier than kerosene lamps, and supplied a water tank which can collect whatever rain water there is.

A new gift that has proven popular is supplying payment to seven fishermen in the Philippines to recover nets from the ocean to be turned into carpet tiles. This is income for the Fisher folk and jobs for the tile manufacturing. We also chose to supply a cutting edge technology camera which can aid wardens protecting vulnerable wildlife from poachers.

In the UK we chose to help regenerate four bluebell woods and purchased sixty square metres of greenbelt land to prevent the urban creep. We supported Dementia clubs for a day and supplied Alzheimer’s vaccine research which is showing very encouraging initial results. Our help has given respite to one family with a disabled child, supplying them with a special babysitter for an evening out. We have also supplied the care for four abandoned pets and, not forgetting the older generation, we helped six elderly or housebound people to care for their pets.

This is a selection of our choices and as always our order was very much appreciated by the Good Gifts staff. We are looking forward to supporting them further in the New Year once our Advent Survey event is finished. 


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