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Operation Christmas Child gets under way
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It’s time to open your hearts and bring joy to the life of a child. The drop-off dates for Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes are Nov. 12-19.
The event will once again be offered by First United Methodist Church.
“Last year’s event was wonderful,” said Debbie Patterson, administrative assistant at the church. “Our community goal for this year is 2,604 shoeboxes. We have a long way to go, but I’m positive we can do it.”
Every local shoebox counts toward the goal in Warren County and around the world. Patterson says, with your help, this could be the year Operation Christmas Child, a product of Samaritan’s Purse, surpasses 100 million shoeboxes packed and distributed since 1993.
If you would like to prepare a shoebox, a standard size box will do or you can use a small plastic container. Wrap the box lid separately, but wrapping is not required. Determine whether your gift will be for a boy or a girl. Age categories are: 2-4, 5-9, and 10-14.
Then fill the box with a variety of gifts that will bring delight to a child. Please include a donation of $7 or more for each shoebox prepared to help cover shipping and other project costs. Place a rubber band around each closed shoebox before dropping it off at First United Methodist.
Suggested items include small cars, balls, dolls, kazoos, harmonicas, yo-yos, jump ropes, Slinky, toothbrush, toothpaste, mild bar soap in a plastic bag, comb, washcloth, hard candy, T-shirts, socks, ball caps, hair clips, toy jewelry, watches, and flashlights with extra batteries.
Patterson says the children need school supplies.
“In some areas of the world, children can’t go to school unless they have their own school supplies,” she said. “School supplies would be wonderful. And sunglasses and flip-flops are always greatly appreciated.”
Suggested items for school use include pens, pencils, sharpeners, crayons, markers, stamps, writing pads or paper, solar calculators, coloring and picture books.
Do not include used or damaged items, war-related items such as toy guns, knives or military figures, chocolate or food, out-of-date candy, liquids or lotions, medications or vitamins, breakable items such as snow globes or glass containers, aerosol cans, or items not appropriate for children.
Individuals who would like to receive a correspondence from the child who receives their shoebox are encouraged to include a person note in the box, as well as a stamped, self-addressed envelope.
“I have one letter from a 9-year-old girl in Rigali, Rwanda who received a shoebox last year,” said Patterson. “She sent her greeting and her love for the gift.”
The letter was sent to Sydney Belle in the United States.
During the eight donation days, hours are:
• Monday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Tuesday 8 to 10 a.m.
• Wednesday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Thursday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Saturday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
• Sunday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
• Monday 8 to 10 a.m.