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Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Ideas

Today is the last day of Operation Christmas Child (OCC) National Collection Week. For those who don’t know, OCC collects shoeboxes of goodies for needy children worldwide. Since 1993, 124 million boxes have been delivered. When I was a child, my family participated and I loved it. I enjoyed shopping for another child — it was like playing Santa. However, it has been over 10 years since we last filled a shoebox. I decided quite belatedly that I wanted to give one again this year. Belatedly meaning I did all my shopping three days before the deadline. Being the infamous box saver that I am and thanks to the fact that my dad just bought some shoes, I had three boxes to fill. I chose to do a 10-14 boy and a 10-14 girl because I read online that there often is not enough shoeboxes for the older kids. I also did a 5-9 girl. Before my shopping trip I scoured for gift ideas from bloggers who fill boxes regularly. I found the lists and the comments to be incredibly helpful so I’m posting my own.

Here’s what I put in my boxes:

10-14 Boy

toothbrush and holder

toothpaste

soap (ordinarily I would have also put in a soap holder, but Wal-Mart was completely out so instead I included a . . .)

washcloth

comb

Legos

Slinky

duct tape

UNO

t-shirt

whistle, compass, thermometer combination instrument thing.

sketchbook

colored pencils

notebook

pens

pencils and a sharpener

erasers

no batteries needed flashlight

math compass

Lifesavers

Werther’s Original

chewing gum

 

10-14 Girl

toothbrush and holder

toothpaste

soap

washcloth

comb

brush

ponytail bands

hair clips

Carmex lip balm

scrapbook paper

scratch paper sets

sketchbook

colored pencils

notebook

pens

pencils and sharpener

erasers

sewing kit

fat quarters

doll

stretchy bracelets (not knowing where the box was headed, I chose fun jewelry with plastic beads. I didn’t want to include anything that looked real or expensive because I don’t want the girl to be robbed and injured.)

Slinky

t-shirt

SweeTarts

Lifesavers

chewing gum

100 piece puzzle

 

5-9 Girl

toothbrush and holder

toothpaste

soap

washcloth

comb

ponytail bands

hair clips

Carmex lip balm

t-shirt

sketchbook

crayons

pencils

pens

erasers

scratch paper

bracelets

baby doll

slinky

lots of chewing gum

 

Other Great Ideas that I didn’t include

ball (especially soccer balls)

small tools (anything but cutting tools)

stuffed animal (Just be careful what type of animal you buy as in other countries animals have different meanings than they do in the US.)

flip-flops (Which you won’t be able to find if you wait to the last-minute because they’re out of season)

jump rope

digital watch

toy cars

ball cap

drawstring bag

water bottle (One with a filter is ok. Even if the children can’t get more filters, they will have cleaner water for at least a few months. Then they can take the filter out and it becomes a normal bottle. If space is a problem (and it is) you can fill the bottle with other goodies like candy or school supplies.)

If you make your shipping donation online, they will send you special labels to track your boxes. I can’t wait to find out where my boxes are sent!

 

For official information about Operation Christmas Child, please visit  the Samaritan’s Purse webpage.

Other helpful blog posts are 100 Shoebox Ideas for Girls and 100 Shoebox Ideas for a Boy.

Please comment with your favorite shoebox stuffers.

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