These toys & clothes can brighten lives

Christine Pikiti from Zambia who has collected children's clothes to send to cancer charity in Lusaka
Christine Pikiti from Zambia who has collected children's clothes to send to cancer charity in Lusaka

A Zambian woman who now lives in Kirkcaldy is asking for help in sending donations of clothes and toys to her homeland.

Christine Pikiti (39), who lives in the town’s Balsusney Road, has collected around 15 black bags full of children’s clothing, footwear and soft toys which she wants to send to a children’s cancer charity in the African country.

The care worker, who has lived in Scotland for 15 years, was prompted to begin collecting for the charity after her sister lost her five-year-old twin girls to sickle cell.

Initially she just saved the clothes which had been worn by her own children Cameron McLeod (12), and Yanday Thomas (3), but when friends heard about her quest they too began giving her donations which have now taken over a room of her house as well as part of a garden shed.

“I have sent over a few smaller donations to the Zambian Childhood Cancer Foundation (ZACCF), but the cost of shipping is quite expensive, so when I looked at shipping out all the clothes and toys it was going to cost so much. It costs about £380 per 100 kilos and I reckon I have around twice that.

“I would love to be able to send the goods out to the children in time for Christmas, so I was wondering if there were any kind people who would like to help sponsor the cost of the shipping.

“I have been in touch with the charity, where people can take their sick children to if they can’t afford to have them treated and they can help with things like medical bills, funeral costs and transport.

“I would like to send the clothes and toys as well as some small gifts so that the charity could make up shoeboxes to give to the children for their Christmas as I know it would be so welcome there.

“It is quite a poor country and they would really appreciate anything we could give them, so these clothes would definitely be well used.

“I am also going to contact some of the shipping firms to explain what I want to do and see if they will give me a discount.”

Christine, who lives with her partner Michael Thomas and two children, has five sisters, four who live in Zambia with their families. She has not been home for many years, but hopes to take her family to visit their relatives next year.

“Both the children save £5 each month from their pocket money to help children in Zambia, and I tell them all about the country I come from. I want to buy things like colouring pencils and sharpeners to go along with the clothes and toys.”

If you can help Christine with the shipping costs, she can be contacted by email at: tinapikiti@hotmail.com.