As of Tuesday, November 6, 2018
If you’re looking for a small way to give back this holiday season, Operation Christmas Child may be the answer for you.
Operation Christmas Child is a project of Samaritan’s Purse of which Rev. Franklin Graham is president. The non-profit Samaritan’s Purse started in 1970 and Operation Christmas Child began in 1993. The program uses gift-filled shoe boxes to demonstrate God’s love in a tangible way to children in need around the world. Since 1993, more than 135 million gift-filled shoe boxes have been collected and delivered to children in more than 150 countries and territories.
This year’s deadline is looming – next week to be exact. Locally, Harpster’s ALACCA Bible Camp (101 China Garden Road) is a national collection point. Times and dates to drop shoe oxes off are: Monday through Friday, Nov. 12 through 16, 10 a.m. to noon; Thursday and Friday, Nov. 15 and 16, 5 to 7 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 17, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Sunday, Nov. 18, 3 to 5 pm.; and Monday, Nov. 19, 8 to 10 a.m. The Grangeville Church of the Nazarene, 515 W. N. 2nd Street, is also accepting boxes through Sunday, Nov. 18. Pamphlets on the program are also in the church foyer. Office hours are Tuesday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
So, how do you get started? Find a standard size shoe box (card board or plastic), fill it with gifts, pray for the child who will receive it, include a $9 donation per box to help with delivery and drop off your box at one of the listed locations (for additional locations see samaritanspurse.org/occ).
What to include? The literature lists the following items:
•“Wow” items: soccer ball with pump, doll, stuffed animal, musical instrument, shoes.
•Toys: toy cars, jump ropes, Yo-yos, toys that light up and make noise (and extra batteries)
•Accessories: socks, hats, sunglasses, hair clips, jewelry and watches, flashlights (also with extra batteries).
•School supplies: pens, pencils and sharpeners, crayons and markers, notebooks and paper, coloring and picture books, solar calculators.
•Non-liquid hygiene items: toothbrushes, bar soap, washcloths, combs.
•A personal note: a message to the child, a photo of yourself/group/family. If you include name and address, the child may be able to write back.
•Do not include: candy, toothpaste, gum, used or damaged items, war-related items, seeds, food, liquid or notions, medications or vitamins, breakable items or glass containers, aerosol cans.
Use the pamphlet tag or designate otherwise who the box is for: Boy or girl in three age categories – 2-4 years; 5-9 years; and 10-14 years.
Those who decide to donate on-line can follow their shoe box and see when and where it is delivered. Go to samaritanspurse.org/occ for details on this.