U.S. Volunteers Believe The Best Time To Make a Difference Is Today

Year-Round Effort Transforms Shoeboxes into Special Gifts for Millions of Children in Need

BOONE, N.C., Aug. 7, 2015 — Reaching more than 11 million children with Christmas joy takes a massive, year-round effort. That’s why, whether it’s August or December, generous volunteers across the United States are partnering with the world’s largest Christmas project of its kind. Through the Samaritan’s Purse project, Operation Christmas Child, kids, families, churches and groups create gifts by filling shoeboxes with a “wow” item—like a doll or soccer ball—and other fun toys, school supplies and hygiene items. These gifts can make a significant difference in the lives of children in need worldwide.

“At any given time, there are more than 8,500 volunteers across the United States making important progress in our effort to collect as many gift-filled shoeboxes as possible,” said Randy Riddle, Operation Christmas Child Director in the United States. “Each shoebox gift represents one more child who will learn he or she is loved and not forgotten.”

Since 1993, Operation Christmas Child has delivered gift-filled shoeboxes to more than 124 million children in more than 150 countries and territories. In 2015, Operation Christmas Child hopes to collect enough shoebox gifts to reach another 11 million children.

How U.S. Residents Can Join the Effort:

PACK A SHOEBOX GIFT — Fill shoeboxes with toys, school supplies, hygiene items and notes of encouragement or visit https://www.samaritanspurse.org/operation-christmas-child/buildonline/ to virtually pack a shoebox through an online tool. The shoebox gift may be the first gift a child has ever received.

SIGN UP TO VOLUNTEER — Volunteer opportunities are available! For more information, visit //www.samaritanspurse.org/operation-christmas-child/volunteer-with-occ/.

SPREAD THE WORD — Enlist individuals, families, and groups to take part in creating shoebox gifts.

Operation Christmas Child is a project of Samaritan’s Purse, an international Christian relief and evangelism organization headed by Franklin Graham. For more information on how to participate in Operation Christmas Child, visit //www.samaritanspurse.org/what-we-do/operation-christmas-child. National Collection Week for gift-filled shoeboxes is Nov. 16 – 23; however, shoebox gifts are collected year-round at the Samaritan’s Purse headquarters in Boone, North Carolina. During National Collection Week, some 4,000 drop-off locations will open their doors to receive gifts in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.

Using special tracking technology, participants can follow their box online to discover where in the world their gift is delivered by using the donation form found at //www.samaritanspurse.org/operation-christmas-child/follow-your-box/.

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