Storage Customer Spotlight: Operation Christmas Child
Operation Christmas Child
As a family-owned business values are very important to us. One of these is the ability to give back to the community when we can. Over the last few years, we have worked with Operation Christmas Child to help store the giftboxes before they are sent around the world. Being able to provide this group of dedicated workers a place to keep the gift boxes until being shipped out means a lot to us.
We wanted to help spotlight what a great organization Operation Christmas Child is. The volunteers and donators alike make this possible so that kids around the world can feel loved.
Who Volunteers for Operation Christmas Child?
There are more than 400 Area Teams in the USA made up of volunteers serving year-round in various roles of media, church and community relations, prayer, and drop off locations.
Drop Off Leaders recruit volunteers from church and community to help pack the shoeboxes into cartons from churches, individuals, and groups and then bring them to Madison Area Team Collection Center. The volunteers are from Baraboo, Columbus, Fennimore, Fort Atkinson, Janesville, Madison, Spring Green, Verona, and Watertown.
Where do the Shoeboxes Go?
We pack the cartons onto trailers and send them to Minnesota for processing. From there they are sent overseas to needy children in over 100 countries. Last year nearly 11 million shoebox gifts were collected worldwide, 8.8 million of which came from the United States. The other countries that give are Australia, Finland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Japan, New Zealand, Canada, Spain, and the U. K.
How Many Shoebox Gifts?
There are 18 active members on our Madison Area Team. This year we are expecting 15,000 boxes. Shoebox gifts are collected from Nov 12-19 this year. Since 1993 more than 157 million shoebox gifts have been delivered to children in over 160 countries.
What is the Mission?
The mission of Operation Christmas Child, a ministry of Samaritan’s Purse, is to demonstrate God’s love in a tangible way to needy children around the world and to make disciples of Jesus Christ.
These gifts bring hope and joy to children in desperate situations and let them know they are loved and not forgotten. For most, this is the first gift they have ever received. We hear story upon story about how God demonstrates His personal love for a child through these gifts, such as the three little girls who were giggling with joy when they found name necklaces in their shoebox gifts. Each little girl’s name necklace matched her very own name!
What is in the Shoebox Gifts?
Last year in the Philippines an 11-year-old boy named Miguel who was mad at the world. One parent was dead and the other in jail. He sat in the back arms crossed, not opening his gift when the other children opened theirs. When asked if he wanted to open the gift, he said no he didn’t want it, he didn’t believe in God. The volunteer said, “Miguel, if there was one thing in the box you really wanted, what would it be?” He said, “If there’s a God, there’s a Spider-Man in this box”. She said, “open it” and he did. Inside not only was there a Spider-Man in the box, EVERYTHING in the box was Spider-Man—toothbrush, notebook, clothing, etc.
Shoebox gifts are filled with school supplies, stuffed animals and dolls, other small toys like balls and yo-yos, soccer balls, clothing, hygiene items.
Learn about our other community outreach projects.