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Operation Christmas Child

A shoe box can make a world of difference in the life of a needy child when it is filled with gifts. Millions of children in our world live and exist in conditions difficult for most of us to imagine. As victims of poverty, war, AIDS, famine and other catastrophes, many are orphans and many live on city streets and in city dumps.

We seldom, if ever, have an opportunity to help these children through personal contact. This time each year we are given the opportunity through Operation Christmas Child to make an impact with shoe boxes filled with gifts.

Operation Christmas Child is a project of international Christian relief organization, Samaritan’s Purse, in Boone, North Carolina, and is sponsored at Shaw Air Force Base by the Base Chapel. These gifts send a message of hope to children in desperate situations around the world.

People of all ages can participate in this project, and express love and concern for needy children while focusing on the true meaning of Christmas, God’s greatest gift, Jesus Christ.

Last year, 10.6 million shoe boxes were collected from developed countries and were sent to children in about 100 developing countries. Shaw has participated in this project for 24 years with 200-400 gift-filled shoe boxes most years.

Please help us reach our goal of collecting 500 boxes this year, and please help us promote this project by encouraging others to participate.

Decide if you want to fill a shoe box for a boy or girl, in an age category of 2-4, 5-9 or ten to fourteen, and put this information on the box lid. Think simpler than you would for the same age groups here. Most gifts will go to children in lesser developed countries than ours.

Suggested Gifts:
— Toys such as stuffed animals, dolls, balls, yo-yos, slinkies, jump ropes, harmonicas, cars, etc. (no guns, knives, toy military persons, or war-related toys)

— School supplies such as pens, pencils, sharpeners, coloring pencils or crayons, coloring books, writing pads or paper, glue sticks, tape, solar calculators, etc.

— Hygiene items such as toothbrushes with holders, soap with holders in zip lock bag, washcloths, combs, hairbrushes, band aids, etc.

— Other items such as flashlights with extra batteries in ziplock bags, t-shirts, socks, children’s picture books.

No food items, or items that may easily break or leak. Items must be new. If you choose to wrap the box, please wrap the lid separately, since contents will be inspected.

Gift-filled shoe boxes will be collected at the Palmetto Chapel on Shaw AFB Nov. 22, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. and Nov. 23, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

You may direct questions to the Shaw Chapel at 803-895-1106.