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Despite a global pandemic, residents of Collin County shared the true meaning of Christmas with children in need this past holiday season.

Generosity throughout southern Collin County resulted in 23,099 shoebox gifts collected at curbside drop-off locations for the Samaritan’s Purse project Operation Christmas Child. Across the U.S., the project collected more than 9.1million such gifts in 2021. Combined with those collected from partnering countries in 2021, the ministry is now sending more than 10.5 million shoebox gifts to children worldwide this year.

Through shoeboxes—packed with fun toys, school supplies, and hygiene items— Volunteers brought joy to children in need around the world. Each gift-filled shoebox is a tangible expression of God’s love, and it is often the first gift these children have ever received. Through the continued generosity of donors since 1993, Operation Christmas Child has collected and delivered more than 188 million gift-filled shoeboxes to children in more than 160 countries and territories

The news is full of stories coming out of Ukraine, but one story, not as loud but very impactful, is that Samaritan’s Purse is currently in the process of distributing over 600,000 gift-filled Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes through 3,000 churches and ministry partners across Ukraine. In addition, Samaritan’s Purse has deployed Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) specialists to Poland and Romania to help with the fleeing Ukrainians. All the while Samaritan’s Purse continues support of its partners and friends in Russia. Families in both of these countries need hope, prayer and need to know they are loved by God.  

Across Collin County, shoebox packers shop for shoebox gift deals year-round, and many serve at a deeper level. Information about ways Collin County participants can get involved year round can also be found at samaritanspurse.org/occ or by contacting Susan Seibert at susan.occtx@gmail.com.

Although local drop-off locations for gifts are closed until Nov. 14 – 21, 2022, anyone can still be a part of this life-changing project by conveniently packing a shoebox gift online in just a few simple clicks at samaritanspurse.org/buildonline.

These simple gifts, packed with love, send a message to children worldwide that they are loved and not forgotten.

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