June 18th, 2024

Shoebox campaign another success for southern Alberta

By Justin Seward - Lethbridge Herald on February 4, 2023.

Despite many challenges in 2022, Canadians were still gracious enough to pack shoeboxes for the Samaritan Purse Shoebox campaign.

The total amount of shoeboxes came to 415,072, and were filled with toys, personal hygiene, school supplies and other items.

Albertans packed 88,717 shoeboxes, which was an increase of 11 per cent from 2021’s total of 80,121.

Locally, Lethbridge led the way withy 2,431, Taber 231, Fort Macleod 98 and Coleman 89.

“We are so grateful for the generosity of Canadians,” said Kendra Shields, director of Operation Christmas Child. “These gift-filled shoeboxes are a tangible expression of God’s love and will provide joy and hope to children, many of whom have never received a gift before.”

The total amount of boxes packed included the 10.6 million worldwide from Canada, United States, United Kingdom, Spain, Finland, South Korea, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Australia, and New Zealand.

Many of the children who will receive the gifts will enroll in the Operation Christmas Child’s discipleship program, The Greatest Journey.

The program teaches kids about the Christian faith and more than 26 million children have participated in it since 2009.

Program graduates receive a New Testament in their language.

Those interested in the year-round option for the campaign, can use the internet option of PackaBox.ca.

Canadians can choose items to go in the box and upload photos and personal notes.

Since 1993, Operation Christmas Child has collected and delivered more than 209 million shoe boxes to children in over 170 countries that were hurt by war, poverty, natural disaster, disease and famine.

The initiative’s 200 millionth box this year was delivered to a girl in the Ukraine.

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