A few years ago I began participating in this wonderful project called "Operation Christmas Child" which is sponsored by an International Relief and Christian organization, The Samaritans Purse.
I just loved preparing shoeboxes every year with my sister and in 2003 I decided to introduce OCC at work. We have been very successful!
For those of you who've never heard of this, here's the email I sent to everyone at work yesterday:
Believe it or not - only 79 days til Christmas!
With that in mind comes our 3rd year of participation in "Operation Christmas Child". Last year we collected a total of 32 boxes to send to needy children around the world. Thank you!
Many of us want to help but are never sure how - if we give money, does it REALLY reach the people who need it most? Operation Christmas Child provides a tangible and practical way to give to the real victims, the children, who are so greatly affected by war, famine, extreme poverty, and disease.
You may already know the details involved....it's very simple:
1. Come see me for your brochure complete with instructions and Boy/Girl label which you will need to stick to your box when you are done. (I believe you can also print these labels from the website)
2. Find a Shoebox (or any box) - or many people last year used small plastic shoebox sized totes or photo boxes you can find at the dollar store or Walmart.
3. Boy or Girl Is your gift for a boy or a girl? Choose an age (2 - 4 years, 5 - 9, or 10 -14).
4. Begin Collecting Items to fill your Shoebox. This is the fun part! Items can include:
Toys (Doll, ball, yo yo, slinky, cars, etc.)
Toiletry items (comb, toothbrush/paste, washclothes, soap bar inside a plastic bag, etc.)
School Supplies (pens, pencils, crayons, writing pads, colouring books, etc.)
Candy (individually wrapped gum, lollipops, mints, etc.)
Others (socks, tshirts, hair clips, sunglasses, hats, etc.)
Remember DO NOT include:
Liquids (these can freeze or spill)
Food items (candy mentioned above is okay but chocolate, for example, can melt)
Breakables (ceramic figurines, glass cups, mirrors)
Harmful or "Scary" Items (war figures, toy guns, sharp objects)
5. Pack your Box. You can wrap your shoebox in Christmas paper if you wish. You may also include a photo of yourself or your family or a letter to "your" child. When you are done, stick your Boy/Girl label on top, check off the appropriate age, and secure the box with an elastic band or two.
6. Drop off - Two options:
Bring them to me on or before FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 11th and I will deliver to the nearest drop-off center
Drop them off yourself. Visit the website listed below for the location nearest you.
If you require further information, please come see me (or call). You can also visit the web at http://www.samaritanspurse.ca/occ/
I also have a video tape this year which you can feel free to borrow. It will touch your heart to see the excitement on the faces of children who receive these gifts.
Thank you in advance for your participation in this project. Thank you if you are already involved in similar projects at home, school, or church. We are truly blessed and what better time than Christmas to share our blessings with the world.
So, now that you know all of the details...visit the website and get involved! Your heart will barely be able to contain the love you feel when you make an effort like this to help a child in a hurting world.