Elizabethtown to open collection site for Operation Christmas Child

WILMINGTON — This month, a location in Elizabethtown will serve as a collection site for Operation Christmas Child, the world’s largest Christmas project of its kind.

The annual Samaritan’s Purse project is a favorite of many Elizabethtown residents, families, churches and groups who spread joy to millions of children around the world by filling shoeboxes with a “Wow!” item — like a doll or soccer ball — other fun toys, school supplies, hygiene items and notes of encouragement.

“Through the simple act of filling a shoebox, someone in Elizabethtown can make a tangible difference in the life of a child halfway around the world. Anyone can participate and bring joy to a child facing difficult circumstances,” said Wilmington Area volunteer Paulette Fittshur, who has participated in Operation Christmas Child for 16 years.

During National Collection Week, Nov. 16 – 23, Elizabethtown residents hope to contribute more than 10,200 gift-filled shoeboxes to the 2015 global goal of reaching 11 million children in need.

The Elizabethtown collection site will be located at Fellowship Bible Church, 2503 Waddell St. The collection site will be open Nov. 16 through Nov. 20 from 4 to 7 p.m.; on Nov. 21 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.; on Nov. 22 from 2 to 6 p.m.; and on Nov. 23 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Operation Christmas Child is a project of Samaritan’s Purse, an international Christian relief and evangelism organization headed by Franklin Graham. Since 1993, Operation Christmas Child has delivered gift-filled shoeboxes to more than 124 million children in more than 150 countries and territories. For many of these children, a gift-filled shoebox is the first gift they have ever received.

For more information about how to participate in Operation Christmas Child call 704-583-1463. With a computer or mobile device, anyone can conveniently pack a personalized Operation Christmas Child shoebox gift on the Samaritan’s Purse website. Go to samaritanspurse.org/occ to select toys and gift items, write a note of encouragement and “pack” them in a shoebox. Using special tracking technology, participants can follow their box to discover where in the world their gift is delivered by using the donation form found at samaritanspurse.org/occ. These gifts of hope will go to children in some of the hardest-to-reach countries.

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