Operation Christmas Child, a Samaritan’s Purse charity is a hands-on way for Canadians to bless struggling children in the developing world by filling shoeboxes with toys, hygiene items, school supplies, and other items.
Operation Christmas Child boxes are available now at the Souris Plaindealeror by calling Carol Turner at 204-483-2661.
Here are some ideas for filling shoeboxes: Start with a “Wow” Item - Delight a kid! Start with a medium to large item that will capture the child’s attention the instant he or she opens the box. Ideas include: Soccer ball with pump, Stuffed animal, Toys (puppets, trucks, etc.), Doll (baby, Barbie, etc.), Musical instrument, Outfit, Shoes. Other Suggestions include toys: items that children will immediately embrace such as toy cars, yo-yos, jump ropes, balls, toys that light up and make noise (with extra batteries), etc. School Supplies: pens, pencils and sharpeners, crayons, markers, notebooks, paper, solar calculators, colouring and picture books, etc. Non-liquid Hygiene Items: toothbrushes, bar soap, combs, washcloths, etc. Accessories: T-shirts, socks, hats, sunglasses, hair clips, jewellery, watches, flashlights, etc. Crafts: Make your own items such as hair bows, finger puppets, and friendship bracelets. You may enclose a note to the child and a photo of yourself, your family, or group. If you include your name and an address, the child may be able to write back.
Do Not Include: Candy; toothpaste; used or damaged items; war-related items such as toy guns, knives, or military figures; chocolate or food; fruit rolls or other fruit snacks; drink mixes (powdered or liquid); liquids or lotions; medications or vitamins; breakable items such as snow globes or glass containers; aerosol cans.
You may wish to gear your donation to a various age group. Girl or Boy ages 2 – 4 years; 5 to 9 years; 10 – 14 years, which you indicate on your filled shoebox.
You may wish to pack a shoebox online at packabox.samaritanspurse.ca
A decade ago Souris shipped approximately 275 filled shoeboxes and according to Carol Turner, the local project coordinator, only 20 boxes were shipped in 2018.
The deadline for returning a full box is November 18.