by Madison V. Fisler
Nov. 18, 2013. The holiday season is quickly approaching, and the seasonal “purchasing of the gifts” is already underway. This year, Samaritan’s Purse’s Operation Christmas Child program seeks to bring holiday joy to needy children all around the world.
Operation Christmas Child kicks off the season with national collection week Nov. 18 – Nov. 25. The organization collects shoeboxes packed with gifts like school supplies, hygiene items and small toys made by giving families, organizations and individuals to send to children in need around the world.
To help out, all you need to do is pack an ordinary shoebox with items that a child would like, including small toys like jump ropes, handheld instruments like harmonicas and whistles, balls, dolls, toy trucks and anything else that can fit. You can also include school supplies such as pencils, crayons, solar calculators, coloring books and pens. Also consider sending personal hygiene items like mild bar soap, toothbrushes, combs and washcloths.
Items that gift givers should avoid putting in the boxes include used or damaged items, liquids or lotions, medications, war-related items, and breakable items.
After you have packed the box, simply enclose a $7 donation which will cover the costs of shipping and bring your gift to one of the local collection centers.
Collection centers in the area include Three Forks Baptist Church in Boone, the Boone Processing Center at 801 Bamboo Road, West Jefferson First Baptist Church in West Jefferson, Lower Creek Baptist Church in Lenoir and others.
There is also the option of building the box completely online with just a click of a button. To build a box online, click here.
Since 1993, 103 million shoebox gifts have been sent from generous families to children in need.