Sunday, November 8, 2009

Operation Christmas Child

Today, we went to Target and filled 2 shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child, run by Samaritan's Purse.  We included a note in each, made a small donation for shipping, and I will be dropping the packed boxes off at a local church.  Samaritan's Purse will ship and distribute the boxes to children around the world, including refugees and flood victims.  The video on their website is both gut-wrenching and inspiring.  Most of us don't have the means to save any of these children from their circumstances, but we can make their lives a little brighter.  (And yes, if the "Christmas" and "Samaritan" didn't clue you in, it IS a Christian organization, and each child WILL be receiving a booklet of bible stories with each box, so if you'd prefer a secular charity, this ain't it.)

The Nugget helped us by deciding which particular book/pair of socks/etc. to buy, then put our items in the cart, and pushed the cart to the checkout.  Although he is pretty young to understand poverty, we explained that today we were picking out some toys for friends who didn't have any.

If you wanted to get in on the action, The Dollar Spot had the perfect filler items!  Here's what we included:

In both boxes:
Toothbrush and toothpaste
Wet Ones
Wood clapper toy (like a castanet)

Boy age 2-4 (fewer items but they were larger!):
Tin with stickers
Wood fire truck
Lacing beads
Alphabet blocks
Candy canes

Girl age 5-9:
Color and activity book
2 pens
Stuffed bear
Folding hairbrush
Self-inking stamp
Bouncy ball
Magic towel (washcloth that comes in a pill form but expands in water)
Lip balm
I debated whether it was "holier-than-thou" of me to make this post (and the Baking GALS one), but then I decided that since I have struggled with finding doable, affordable service projects as a SAHM with a toddler, that there were likely others in the same boat, so that's why I'm choosing to share the service projects we do :)  Thanks to my friend AP for finding and sharing this project!

Does anyone else know of other inexpensive, simple ways to serve that are inclusive of small children?  I can't, for example, dole out hot soup at a shelter, tutor grade schoolers, or volunteer at a NARHA stable with a toddler in tow.  And we'd prefer projects that would cost $25 or less.  Please comment with your ideas!


  1. That seems like a good and easy idea and I am sure that the nugget enjoyed the shopping and packing. The plan for us this year is to do something very local. Even as an adult I find it hard when I don't know what happens to my donation so for Noah, I feel that I want him to see and begin to get what the donation will mean. So he will help me buy a toy ( one he would like so as to understand the sharing part) and also food he would want to eat and we will find a toy drive and food drive around town.

  2. I am so proud of you for volunteering like you do. Amazing.
    Some things that I do are donating sewn/crafted items to raffles and such (as I will do for your nephew's dinner), and donating specialty foods to the food bank.
    Many people have dietary requirements, like needing rice or soy milk instead of dairy milk, or needing low sodium canned goods or gluten free foods. Food banks almost never have these things to give.