Christmas is arriving early all over Cornwall, as people across the Duchy, like others across the UK, are packing shoe box gifts for children in more than 100 countries suffering from natural disaster, war, terrorism, disease, famine and poverty including refugees who have fled their homes in Syria.  The shoe box gifts are collected at locations across Cornwall and then exported to reach suffering children around the world.

“Operation Christmas Child is a unique opportunity to do something as simple as packing a shoe box that will have a lasting impact on a child a world away,” said Helen Snashall, Operation Christmas Child area coordinator. “What goes into the box is fun, what comes out is eternal.”

Since 1990, Operation Christmas Child, a project of international Christian relief and evangelism organisation Samaritan’s Purse has delivered more than 124 million gift-filled shoe boxes to needy children in some 130 countries.   Each shoebox is an unconditional gift, given to a child as an expression of God’s love to us, and the gift of His Son Jesus at Christmas.  Where culturally appropriate local churches, after the shoebox distribution, may invite children to attend a discipleship programme called The Greatest Journey. This is a voluntary follow-up course for children who have received shoeboxes through Operation Christmas Child, enabling them to interact with the Gospel, through Bible stories and Bible teaching and since it started in 2008 2.8 million children have enrolled on the programme.

For more information on how to pack your shoebox or other ways you can support Operation Christmas Child contact Helen by completing the form below or visit www.samaritans-purse.org.uk.  Shoeboxes can be dropped off at any of the collection centres around Cornwall between 1st and 18th November (locations can be found on the website).

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