A boy in Rwanda receives his shoebox gift


Shoebox gifts collected in 2018 will be delivered to tens of thousands of children in Rwanda. Praise God that over 1 million children have received a shoebox since 1994, when Operation Christmas Child began distributing gifts here.

  • Rwanda has 11.9 million people and is located in central and east Africa
  • 41% of the population is 14 years old or younger

Good News. Great Joy.

Operation Christmas Child delivers the good news of Jesus Christ to children around the world.

Stories From Rwanda

A Free Gift
Local volunteers distributed 1,000 shoebox gifts to children living in the Gisenyi refugee camp. Even the children’s parents came to the meeting, where the Gospel was shared. Many in attendance heard about Jesus and His free gift of salvation for the first time. After the distribution, the volunteer team sent a pastor to start a church in the camp.

Responding to the Gospel
A local volunteer reported: “In Nyaruguru, a child had no shoes. When he got his shoebox, he found shoes inside. He was very excited and thanked God for His mercy. He began to witness to his friends and parents about what the Lord did for him using the pair of shoes he received. His parents responded to the Gospel because of his testimony.”

One Goal
A local volunteer reported: “OCC ministry has brought oneness in different denominations and different ministries coming together for one goal.”

The True Meaning of Forgiveness
After the Rwandan Genocide, Alex Nsengimana became a Christian. Since then, his goal has been to meet the man who killed his uncle and offer him forgiveness face-to-face. Read more

A Gift for Forgiveness in Rwanda
One man’s journey of survival and redemption. Read more

A Genocide Remembered
A survivor of the Rwandan genocide returns home to show forgiveness to the people who killed his family. Read more

#shoeboxstories: Alex and a Candy Cane
A first-hand account of how a shoebox gift brought joy following the Rwandan genocide. Read more


Prayer Requests from Ministry Partners in Rwanda

  • Pray God provides all of the resources needed during the coming year and continues to strengthen the teams’ commitment and trust in Him.
  • Pray God’s peace and presence will dwell over the teams. Pray He will bless everyone who works with this project and bring the children a deeper knowledge of Christ.

The Greatest Journey

Your shoebox is just the first step to transforming a young life for eternity. Every shoebox gift delivered by Operation Christmas Child is a tangible expression of God’s love. It also presents an opportunity in more than 100 countries for our church partners to invite children into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ through our follow-up discipleship program. The Greatest Journey is a dynamic approach to discipleship—including 12 engaging Bible lessons—that local trained teachers are using to instruct the next generation of believers on how to become devoted followers of Christ and boldly share their faith with others. Worldwide, 14.9 million children have enrolled in the program since 2009.

This year in Rwanda, these Bible lessons will be offered to children who receive a shoebox gift. These 12 lessons guide children through a study of who Jesus Christ is, what it means to follow Him, and how to share this exciting message with others. Over 256,000 children in Rwanda have enrolled in this program since it started, and more than 237,000 have graduated.

Will you help us “go and make disciples of all nations” as Christ commanded? Sign up for a monthly gift of $6, and each year you will give 12 children study materials, a New Testament, and the opportunity to learn what it means to devote their lives to sharing the Good News of eternal grace through Jesus Christ.

Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.(Matthew 9:37-38). God is answering those prayers through The Greatest Journey, the discipleship program Samaritan’s Purse offers for boys and girls who receive shoebox gifts through Operation Christmas Child. We train teachers and supply local churches with everything they need—including Bibles for graduates. Through The Greatest Journey, over 3.8 million children have prayed to receive Jesus Christ as their Savior, and 4.2 million have promised to prayerfully share the Gospel with friends and family.
The Greatest Journey Jesus reminds us that the Kingdom of God is filled with people who have childlike faith. “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 19:14). We praise God that more than five million children have made decisions for Christ through The Greatest Journey. When they graduate, we present them with the New Testament in their own language so they can continue to grow in their faith and share Jesus with friends and family members. Your gift of $6 per child will enable us to train local volunteer teachers and provide all the materials for the 12-lesson course, including the graduation Bibles.

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Suggested Gift: $6, or $6,000 for a thousand children


Watch children’s reactions as they receive their shoebox gifts!

Questions about Follow Your Box? Click here for answers.

Beyond the Box

Read more about the work of Samaritan’s Purse in Rwanda.

A Journey of Faith to Rwanda
A doctor who served with World Medical Mission follows God’s call to full-time service at Kibogora Hospital. Read more

Ignored No Longer
One of our staff in the UK talks about the church’s response to the genocide in Rwanda. Read more

Remembering Rwanda

Remembering Rwanda
On April 6, 1994, an airplane carrying Rwandan president Juvénal Habyarimana and other officials was shot down, killing everyone on board. The incident led to one of the most horrific outbreaks of genocide in history. Spurred on by government leaders, members of the Hutu majority began to slaughter their Tutsi neighbors. From early April to mid-July, an estimated 800,000 people were killed… Read more