Packing Shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child

Christmas is upon us, even if we're not ready for it yet. The spirit of Christmas is all about giving. Today I am presenting you with a way to give, making a HUGE impact and is little to no cost for you.
Packing an Operation Christmas Child shoebox | Managing a Home
What is Operation Christmas Child?
Operation Christmas Child is a program run by Samaritan's Purse that brings gifts to kids around the world at Christmastime. They also share the reason for Christmas, Jesus.

Here are some stats from Operation Christmas Child:

- 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.

- In, 2014, Samariatn's Purse hopes to collect enough shoeboxes to reach another 10 million children through the Operation Christmas Child project.

- More than 500,000 volunteers worldwide, with more than 100,000 of those in the United States, are involoved in collecting, shipping and distributing shoebox gifts.

- Samaritan's Purse will deliver the gifts to children in more than 100 countries on six continents.

My husband and I started this tradition of packing shoeboxes four years ago. It is something that we enjoy doing together - picking out toys and essentials for the kids - and is something that I am excited to do with my daughter.

What is in a shoebox?

Here are some of the items that we include in our shoeboxes.
Packing an OCC shoebox | Managing a Home

Packing an OCC shoebox | Managing a Home
For every box we include: bar of soap, loofah or washcloth, toothbrush {no toothpaste as it is considered a liquid}, pencils {sharpened}, notepad, manual pencil sharpener, and a stuffed animal. We fill in the rest with books and toys. Operation Christmas Child also provides you with a list of suggestions too.

The one thing that the children say that is their most favorite gift, is a note. So this year, we made sure to include some handwritten notes from our family.

Personal note for Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes | Managing a Home

Another item that we include is a candy cane with a poem.  I print out this poem, cut it in half and tape a candy cane to the left of the poem, so the hook is facing the baby Jesus.
Candy Cane with Poem for Operation Christmas Child | Managing a Home

I have included the free printable for you to download here.

Free Printable Candy Cane Poem for Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes | Managing a Home
Click here to get your free download
After your box is packed up, you can provide a check for $7 per box {combine if you have multiple boxes} to help cover the cost of the shipping. They also have a cool feature where you can donate this money online and track your box. We have done this for the past two years. It is so fun to find out that our boxes ended up in Dominican Republic and Haiti.

If you don't have access to a shoebox, you can just show up at the drop off locations with your goodies. They have the red and green boxes available for your there.

Drop off week starts Monday!
Drop off's run from Monday, November, 17 through Monday, November 24. Find a drop off location near you.

What can you do to help even if you don't have time to go shop for materials?

If you don't have time to pack your own box, you can go online and pack a virtual box! For $25 you can choose a boy or girl and choose the items that go inside. I never saw this before and think it is such a great idea!

The best way you can help is pray. Pray that these children will receive exactly the box they need. Pray that Samaritan's Purse can fulfill their goal of reaching millions of children around the world, especially children who may not have ever received a gift.

Help give others ideas - what did you pack in your box? Leave it in the comments!
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  1. Sounds like an awesome charity! What a great way to spread the love around the world!

    1. It really is! Hope you get a chance to pack a box!

  2. Thanks for sharing an excellent way to give in the holiday season!

    1. Thank you and I hope you are able to help by packing a box!

  3. Lovely! What a blessing to these kids (:


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