Operation Christmas Child is an initiative of Samaritan’s Purse. Samaritan’s Purse is a nonprofit Christian ministry founded by Franklin Graham.  Samaritan’s purse has a variety of projects around the world, and they are known for their disaster relief.

When people like you fill shoe boxes or a small box with things like school supplies, hygiene items and toys, Operation Christmas Child takes those boxes all over the world. They work with church partners who give the boxes out and use the gifts as an outreach ministry to children and families.

While the the gifts are known to come in shoe boxes, individuals can also choose to use small plastic bins. Those are actually an extra gift to families who receive the boxes because these plastic bins can be used to store food or carry water.

Good items to pack:

•   School supplies
•   Notebooks
•   Pens
•   Crayons
•   Toothbrushes
•   Toothpaste
•   Soap
•   Dolls
•   Balls
•   Beanie Babies

Items to avoid:

•   War/military-like items such as toy weapons
•   Items that could break, spill or melt such as chocolate or lotion

Once an individual has packed a box they can drop it off at one of the many drop-off locations.

Although it might seem small, a shoe box of small gifts can truly touch the life of a child who has nothing.  Nicole Sheldon recently experienced this when she participated in a shoe box distribution in Uganda.

“We had kids that were screaming when they would open their boxes and pull out things like pencils and toothbrushes. I mean, they were screaming.”

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