Samaritan’s Purse’s Operation Christmas Child, a project that delivers shoeboxes packed with items for children in need around the world, is powering ahead this year despite the pandemic.

The project is a practical way for Australians to help children in need around the world by filling shoebox gifts with toys, hygiene items, school supplies and other fun gifts.

October is their national collection month and they plan to collect shoebox gifts through a volunteer network across the country.

“Looking forward to the coming [collection] season, the ministry is monitoring local, state, and national guidelines and making adjustments to help protect the health of everyone involved in collecting and processing shoebox gifts,” a Samaritan’s Purse spokesperson said.

In 2019, over 273,000 shoeboxes were packed in Australia and New Zealand, and over 10 million packed worldwide. The shoebox gifts were delivered to over 100 countries across the world, including 2019 focus countries of the Philippines, Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Cambodia.

To start packing a shoebox, individuals and families can use a shoebox from home or pick up pre-printed Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes at Dimboola Mensland.

For any inquiries you can contact Area Coordinator Ann Rohde on 0467 239493 or 1300 884 468. Filled shoeboxes need to be returned by Wednesday 28th October.

A new development this year is the opportunity to “pack” a shoebox online. You can find out more about this initiative and the broader ‘Operation Christmas Child’ at OperationChristmasChild.org.au.