It’s that time again when folks pack shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child (OCC) to be sent to less fortunate children around the world.
OCC is a division of Samaritan’s Purse that has been collecting and delivering shoeboxes since 1993 … 209 million shoeboxes, in fact, in more than 170 countries and territories.
Like so many folks, we pack a shoebox either in person or online knowing, for many of these little ones, that it will be the first and only gift they will receive.
Not only do they make a big impact to the children, but these boxes often open doors for Samaritan’s Purse to work with local community leaders in identifying and addressing important needs such as clean water, literacy, vocational training for women and school meals for children.
There are also special people like Shelley Piro Schuett who make things all year long to be put in shoeboxes at a “packing party”.
This year, Shelley has made over 1,000 items!
Rally your family and friends to pack a shoebox with a toy (doll, stuffed animal, soccer ball and pump), hygiene items, clothing and school supplies.
Perhaps even add a photo or card. Remember to include a $10 donation (cash, cheque or online) with each box to cover the cost of shipping.
If you’d rather, you can very easily pack a shoebox online at www.packabox.ca. And, like Shelley, you can also be making toys, crafts and clothing items all year long.
Last year, Camrose and area sent 2,295 boxes, which added to the 415,072 packed from Canada, and a total of 10.6 million packed worldwide.
This year, the goal for Camrose and area is 2,500.
Collection is Nov. 13 to 19, 2023, at Century Meadows Baptist Church (3720-66 St.) in Camrose. If you have any questions about collection, reach out to Kathy Runnalls at 780-678-6328.
Bring joy and hope to children and their families in poverty-stricken countries this year!