CARE packages: “What a wonderful surprise it was”

CARE packages being unloaded from a ship

Rose McGowan remembers receiving CARE packages after the war:

I was born in June 1944 in Glasgow and resided in one room with my parents and two younger siblings. We lived at 38 Vine Street, Glasgow (now demolished). We had gas lights (no electricity) and a coal-fired range for cooking and had very little money as my father was often unemployed.

What a wonderful surprise it was for us when we received a parcel from AMERICA – a place which we thought existed only in the movies. 

I well remember a cooked chicken in a tin of broth, some chocolates and sweets and a beautiful dolly which had a china face and a cloth body.

Other foodstuffs were shared with our neighbours and my Auntie Rosie, a spinster who lived next door. She was an usherette in the local cinema and would sneak us in to see the movies.

Share your story

If you or your family or someone you know received a CARE package, please get in touch to tell us your story:

  • fill in the form below
  • call us on 0800 320 2233

We’re very happy for you to just share a few memories or your full story – as much or as little as you want to share. And if you have any photos or other memorabilia to go with your story, please let us know. We’ve created an online home for memories about the original CARE packages (and we feature longer stories on our website too). We think it’s important that the stories aren’t forgotten and that future generations can share them.

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News and stories are provided by CARE staff working to support our emergency responses and long-term development programmes.