Estacada church prepares for Operation Christmas Child
Operation Christmas Child is adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The program, organized by Samaritan's Purse and facilitated in Estacada by Clackamas Valley Baptist Church, connects children around the world with school supplies, hygiene items, toys and information about the story of Jesus. These items are put into shoeboxes and distributed to recipients on Christmas.
Along with dropping off items in person, those interested in supporting the program can also pack a virtual shoebox at
"Much of the world has been gripped with fear, and this is especially hard for children," said Franklin Graham, president of Samaritan's Purse. "Now more than ever, these boys and girls need to know God loves them. Operation Christmas Child delivers the hope found only in Jesus Christ."
During the week of Nov. 16-23, toys, school supplies and hygiene items for the shoeboxes can be dropped off at a variety of locations, including Clackamas Valley Baptist Church, 29275 S.E. Eagle Creek Road. Participants are asked not to include candy, toothpaste, gum, used or damaged items, war-related items, food, seeds, drinks mixes, liquids or lotions, medications or vitamins, breakable items or aerosol cans.
Once the shoebox gifts are collected from donation centers, they are prepared for overseas shipment at processing locations in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boone, N.C., Charlotte, N.C., Dallas, Denver, Chicago and Fullerton, Calif. To receive information on the destination of their shoeboxes, participants can donate $9 per box to receive tracking labels.
Since 1993, Operation Christmas Child has collected and delivered more than 178 million shoebox gifts to children in more than 160 countries and territories. More than 500,000 volunteers from across the world assist with collecting, shipping and distributing shoebox gifts.
This year, leaders involved with the project hope to distribute 11 million shoeboxes in Peru, the Philippines, Rwanda and Ukraine. In 2019, more than 10.5 million were collected, including 8.9 million from the U.S.
Clackamas Valley Baptist Church typically donates around 900 shoeboxes and is excited to continue the tradition this year.
Headquartered in North Carolina, Samaritan's Purse is a nondenominational Christian organization founded in 1970. The group's goals include providing spiritual and physical aid to victims of war, natural disasters, disease, famine, poverty and persecution. There are field offices in 17 countries and ministry partners in more than 100 countries.
For more information about Samaritan's Purse and Operation Christmas Child, visit samaritanspurse.org.
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