Operation Christmas Child gears up for holiday season

Published: Friday, Oct. 25, 2013 5:30 a.m.CDT

While people all across the country are preparing for the holidays, Sycamore-area volunteers are filling shoe boxes with toys, school supplies and hygiene items for needy children overseas.

Operation Christmas Child, a year-round project of international Christian relief and evangelism organization Samaritan’s Purse, will hold its National Collection Week Nov. 18 through 25. This year marks Operation Christmas Child’s 20th year of collecting and delivering shoe boxes. In that time, more than 100 million shoe box gifts have been hand-delivered to children in more than 130 countries worldwide.

For many of the recipients, the packed shoe box is the first gift they ever received. This year, the operation hopes to collect 9 million boxes.

Boxes can be dropped off at First Baptist Church of Sycamore, 530 W. State St. in Sycamore, between Nov. 18 and 25. Collection hours are from 1 to 4 p.m. Nov. 18; 6 to 8 p.m. Nov. 19 and 20; 10 a.m. to noon Nov. 21 and 22; 1 to 3 p.m. Nov. 23 and 24; and 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Nov. 25.

Additional local collection sites and more information can be found online at www.samaritanspurse.org. Tips on how to pack a box also can be found on the site.

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