OCC is a ministry of Samaritan's Purse International. Each year they send millions of shoe boxes to children in desperate situations - poverty, war, natural disaster, famine - all over the world. The shoe boxes are full of toys, school supplies, and necessity items selected and packed by people just like you and me! The kids receive their shoe boxes at parties put on by local Christian ministries, they hear the true meaning of Christmas, and they receive a Gospel storybook in their own language. The local ministries then follow up with the children and families who are open to continuing to receive help.
What I love about this ministry is not only the impact it can have on the children who receive the shoeboxes, but also the amazing lessons it can teach us and our children - that Christmas isn't supposed to be about get, get, get, me, me, me. It's about God's gift to the world in His Son, and in honor of that gift, our giving to others.
In the United States, collection week is November 16 - 23, just before Thanksgiving. There are collections in other countries, too, and different rules for what you can put in your shoeboxes and different collection dates.
For more information about OCC, how to pack a shoebox, and where and when to donate shoe boxes in your country, please visit these links:
- United States
How to Pack a Shoe Box in the U.S.
- Australia and New Zealand
- United Kingdom
- Germany and Austria
This video captures what my words cannot. I dare you to watch this video, see the looks on the kids' faces, and NOT send a shoebox!
Thank you for taking the time to consider supporting this effort. Please leave a comment if you are familiar with OCC or decide to participate!