Scots girl uses money from cancelled birthday party to send gifts to people living alone

A kind-hearted girl has used money set aside for her cancelled birthday party to send gift boxes to people who live alone.

Lily White, nine, has created 100 “Cup of Friendship” boxes containing teabags, coffee sachets, milk, packets of biscuits and cakes for two.

The young girl, from Arbroath, designed the front of the boxes herself which each have a colourful picture of a teacup and a card with a heartwarming message inside which reads: “Everyone should know that they are not alone. I hope that this box makes someone smile and they can enjoy a cuppy and a biscuit."

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Lily attends Arbroath West Kirk and worked on the project with her minster, Rev Chris Hay, who described her act of kindness as “humbling”.

Lily White, nine, has created  100 “Cup of Friendship” boxes containing teabags, coffee sachets, milk, packets of biscuits and cakes for those who lives alone picture: supplied

She is a regular church-goer and said she misses seeing the congregation each week as lockdown has forced gatherings to be put on hold.

The Muirfield Primary School pupil said: “God tells us to share with others, to care for one another, be kind and use our gifts and talents to do ‘His’ work.

“We have all taken things for granted and lockdown has made us all think about what is important.

“Church is important to me and I have missed seeing my church family each week and I am sure they have missed me.

“I worry about people who are on their own, they must feel lonely and isolated and I want these Cup of Friendship boxes to make people smile and to show that someone is thinking about them.”

Lily’s mum Vicki, the organist at Arbroath West Kirk, said she and her husband, Steven, are “very proud” of their daughter.

“Lily was born into the church and sees the congregation as her extended family and during the first lockdown we were without a minister and found it hard to be able to reach out to those who needed it,” she said.

“Lily came up with this idea and my husband and I gave her £100 which was set aside for her birthday party which was unable to happen.

“She planned, drew, coloured and bought all the items herself.

“Chris helped by providing prayer cards and working out how these boxes could be sent out into the community.”

Mrs Hay was ordained into the ministry of the Church of Scotland in October and Arbroath West Kirk is her first full-time charge.

“Like many churches, we have a large percentage of older members, many of whom live alone and are not experts in the use of the internet and social media,” she said.

“Lily's initiative, her thought for others at a time when activities were cancelled for her, coupled with her commitment to filling and completing each box is humbling.

“The Kirk Session is delighted to support her by providing the names and the means to distribute them by post as we can't deliver them in person.

“It's a great demonstration of Jesus' love in action and we hope that each box will brighten someone's day and encourage them as we wait for the restrictions to be lifted.”

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