Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Operation Christmas Child Now Collecting Gift-Filled Shoeboxes To Share With Needy Children Around The World



Operation Christmas Child is the world’s largest Christmas project of its kind. It uses gift-filled shoeboxes to share God’s love in a tangible way with needy children around the world. Since 1993, Samaritan’s Purse has collected and delivered more than 113 million gift-filled shoeboxes to children in over 150 countries through Operation Christmas Child.

How does it work?
Individuals, families, churches, and groups fill empty shoeboxes with gifts of toys, school supplies, hygiene items, and notes of encouragement. During National Collection Week, Nov. 17-24, Samaritan’s Purse will collect the gift-filled shoeboxes at more than 4,000 drop-off sites in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.
Operation Christmas Child also offers the opportunity year-round to pack personalized shoebox gifts online. Go to samaritanspurse.org and click on Operation Christmas Child to select toys and gift items, write a note of encouragement, and “pack” them in a shoebox.
Shoebox gifts are prepared for overseas shipment at nine major processing centers across the United States—Atlanta; Baltimore; Boone, N.C.; Charlotte; Dallas; Denver; Honolulu; Minneapolis; and Southern California.
Samaritan’s Purse will deliver the gifts to children in more than 100 countries on six continents.
How To Pack A Shoebox
  • Use an empty cardboard or plastic shoebox (average size). You can wrap the box, lid separately, but wrapping is not required.
  • Decide whether your gift will be for a boy or a girl, and the age category: 2-4, 5-9, or 10-14. Download and print the appropriate boy/girl label. Mark the correct age category and tape the label to the top of your box.
  • Fill the box with a variety of gifts that will bring delight to a child (see Gift Suggestions below).
  • Help cover shipping and other costs related to delivering your shoeboxes to children overseas by donating $7 for each gift you prepare. You can give online to discover the destination of your box. Or, you can write a check to Samaritan’s Purse (note “OCC” on the memo line) and place it in an envelope on top of the items inside your shoebox. If you are preparing multiple gifts, please make one combined donation. Note: Follow Your Box is only available through online giving.
  • Ask God to use your gifts to show His love to the child who will receive your shoebox.
  • Place a rubber band around each closed shoebox and bring it to the drop-off location nearest you during National Collection Week, November 17–24, 2014. Visit our Drop-off Locations page to find the closest collection site. Or, call 1-800-353-5949.

Gift Suggestions

  • TOYS: Include items that children will immediately embrace such as dolls, toy cars, stuffed animals, kazoos, harmonicas, yo-yos, jump ropes, balls, toys that light up and make noise (with extra batteries), etc.
  • SCHOOL SUPPLIES: pens, pencils and sharpeners, crayons, markers, notebooks, paper, solar calculators, coloring and picture books, etc.
  • NON-LIQUID HYGIENE ITEMS: toothbrushes, bar soap, combs, washcloths, etc.
  • ACCESSORIES: t-shirts, socks, hats, sunglasses, hair clips, jewelry, watches, flashlights (with extra batteries), etc.
  • A PERSONAL NOTE: You may enclose a note to the child and a photo of yourself or your family. If you include your name and address, the child may be able to write back.
  • DO NOT INCLUDE: Used or damaged items; war-related items such as toy guns, knives or military figures; chocolate or food; out-of-date candy; liquids or lotions; medications or vitamins; breakable items such as snow globes or glass containers; aerosol cans.

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