When I read through this post from Miss Maggie’s Place I knew it would be a great one to share with you. It allows children to be active participants in the giving process in a very simple yet important way. I was probably also drawn to the post since Jennifer is a Girl Scout leader. I have very fond memories of singing at a retirement home and helping others as a girl scout. Please take a moment to find out about this important program Jennifer works on with her troop and her family.
Hi my name is Jennifer. I’m thrilled to be doing a guest post today. I really appreciate Jen inviting me over to her awesome blog. I’m in my 5th year as a Girl Scout leader and I absolutely love working with girls. My blog is called Miss Maggie’s Place and you’ll find kids crafts, recipes for cooking with kids, Girl Scout ideas, and you’ll get to see a few of the sights around Georgia and South Carolina.
I wanted to share with you some information about Operation Christmas Child.
Operation Christmas Child is an outreach of Samaritan’s Purse. The Samaritan’s Purse organization was founded by the Graham family over 40 years ago. They help those around the world who are affected by war, drought, disease and help them to break the cycle of poverty. They have several programs and one of them is Operation Christmas Child. You can check out this youtube video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJR28o9vukU
At my house we love Operation Christmas Child. It teaches my kids to think of others and it makes them feel sooo good to help another child who is the same age as them. OCC is a shoebox ministry that provides a tangible gift for children living in desperate circumstances. With the shoebox also comes a program written in the child’s own language to help them understand God’s love for them. We have participated in this awesome ministry for several years. My kids love it and my Girl Scouts love it too. Last year over 8 million children in 130 countries received shoeboxes.
You will need a shoebox like this. You can also purchase a plastic shoebox from Wal-mart for about $1.
1) Decide if you want your gift to be for a Boy or Girl
2) Choose an age group – 2-4 yrs old, 5-9 yrs old, or 10-14 yrs old
3) Fill your shoebox with small toys, hygiene items, school supplies, hard candy, t-shirt and underwear.
At Girl Scouts we’ll make 2 boxes. The girls make a list of what items they want to include and assign everyone what to bring. At home we do 1 girl box and 1 boy box. Since we have one of each.
The dollar bin at Target is a great place to find cute toys, stickers and socks. We also go to the Dollar Tree and we have been know to save Happy Meal toys for our boxes. You can also find t-shirts on clearance. Please don’t include any used items, liquids, chocolate, food or any war toys/soldiers.
You can print out a coloring sheet for your kids to fill out all about themselves and put inside the box check it out here http://www.samaritanspurse.org/
After your box is packed go to http://www.samaritanspurse.org/and print out a label. Tape it to the top of your box. You’ll need to fill out the form & include a $7 check for shipping. If you decide to pay for shipping online they will track your shoebox and let you know what country it went to. I think that is super cool.
Write a short letter to the child and include a picture of your family. You can also include a self addressed stamped envelope and you just might get a letter back. My Girl Scout troop got a letter back from a little girl living in an orphanage in India. They girls were very excited to see who received our shoebox.
Collection week is November 14-21. To find drop off locations in your area call 1-800-353-5949 or visit the website. If you are interested in your group, organization or Sunday school class making boxes as a group you can request a packet & DVD by calling the 1-800 number or checking the website.
This is such an awesome ministry and it makes YOU feel so good to help a child in need.
Jennifer, thanks for sharing with us a wonderful way to help others!
Remember to enter the GIVEAWAY today – the winner will be announced tomorrow