Gift-filled shoeboxes being collected for Operation Christmas Child

For a few weeks every fall, churches, schools and homes throughout Central Alberta join thousands of individuals worldwide

Submitted

For a few weeks every fall, churches, schools and homes throughout Central Alberta join thousands of individuals worldwide and turn a corner of their home or facility into Santa’s Workshop.

Operation Christmas Child’s shoebox program is in full swing, so folks are packing shoeboxes with goodies for impoverished children around the world. If you’d like to don your own elf-cap, you can get in on the fun by filling any shoebox approximately six inches deep and 8×11 inches across (about the size of a standard piece of paper).

The familiar green and red boxes are available free at the Alliance Church, but any shoebox, small tool box or sturdy plastic container with a snug lid will serve nicely. Decide if your box is for a boy or a girl, and which age category it’s for — 2 to 4, 5 to 9 or 10 to 14. Put that information on the lid.

Items to put inside:

● Something for learning — school items (especially paper and pencils), learning tools and craft kits

● Something for hygiene, including items such as toothbrushes, soap, facecloths and razors

● Something for loving — gifts such as stuffed animals, toy cars, hats, T-shirts, Lego and bracelets

● Hard candy

● $7 to cover shipping and handling (cheques for $15 or more made out to Samaritan’s Purse or Operation Christmas Child receive a tax-deductible receipt when requested at the time)

● Something personal if you’d like — pictures and cards are cherished by recipients

Please don’t send food, vitamins, playing cards or anything that will melt, break or spill, or harm or scare a child.

Drop off your box at a church that is participating in the program, such as the Alliance Church in Sylvan Lake, any weekday during business hours, or Sunday until noon, by Nov. 16.

For more information, or to pack a shoebox online, visit www.operationchristmaschild.ca.