Operation Christmas Child collection sites announced


ATHENS — This month, three Athens County churches and one Meigs County church will serve as drop-off locations for the Samaritan’s Purse project Operation Christmas Child. Coolville United Methodist, The Plains United Methodist, Christ Community Wesleyan Church, and Hope Baptist Church will join nearly 5,000 U.S. locations collecting gift-filled shoeboxes for children in need around the world.

During the project’s National Collection Week, Nov. 13-20, Athens and Megis County residents will lovingly pack empty shoeboxes with gifts of hope filled with fun toys, school supplies, hygiene items and a wow item like a soccer ball or colorfully dressed fashion doll.

After being collected in Athens and Meigs Counties, these shoebox gifts will be transported to North Carolina, to be processed, and will then join the 2017 global goal of reaching 12 million children living in poverty overseas.

Athens volunteer Kailyn Browning shared, “Packing a shoebox can effect a life eternally. It’s not what we pack in the box, but what comes out that’s eternal.” Browning has participated in Operation Christmas Child for 13 years.

Drop-off locations and hours are as follows:

Hope Baptist Church, 570 Grant Street, Middleport, Ohio (740-992-5334)

Operating hours: Monday, Nov. 13, (1-4 p.m.); Tuesday, Nov. 14, (1-4 p.m.); Wednesday, Nov. 15, (1-4 p.m.); Thursday, Nov. 16, (1-4 p.m.); Friday, Nov. 17, (1-4 p.m.); Saturday, Nov. 18, (1-4 p.m.); Sunday, Nov. 19, (1-4 p.m.); Monday, Nov. 20, (9-11 a.m.)

Coolville United Methodist Church, 26460 Main Street, Coolville, Ohio (740-667-6672)

Operating hours: Monday, Nov. 13, (6-8 p.m.); Tuesday, Nov. 14, (6-8 p.m.); Wednesday, Nov. 15, (11 a.m-1 p.m.); Thursday, Nov. 16, (6-8 p.m.); Friday, Nov. 17, (3-5 p.m.); Saturday, Nov. 18, (10 a.m.-noon); Sunday, Nov. 19, (1-3 p.m.); Monday, Nov. 20, (1-3 p.m.).

The Plains United Methodist Church, 3 N. Plains Road, The Plains, Ohio (740-541-4363)

Operating hours: Monday, Nov. 13, (4-6 p.m.); Tuesday, Nov. 14, (2-4 p.m.); Wednesday, Nov. 15, (2-4 p.m.); Thursday, Nov. 16, (3:30-5 p.m.); Friday, Nov. 17, (4-6 p.m.); Saturday, Nov. 18, (10 a.m.-noon); Sunday, Nov. 19, (9-11 a.m.); Monday, Nov. 20, (10 a.m.-noon).

Christ Community Wesleyan Church, 6275 Kenney Memorial Lane, Albany, Ohio (740-698-2292)

Operating hours: Monday, Nov. 13, (9 a.m.-noon); Monday, Nov. 13, (1:30-4 p.m.); Tuesday, Nov. 14, (9 a.m.-noon); Tuesday, Nov. 14, (1:30-4 p.m.); Wednesday, Nov. 15, (9 a.m.-noon); Wednesday, Nov. 15 (6-8 p.m.); Thursday, Nov. 16, (9 a.m.-noon); Thursday, Nov. 16, (1:30-4 p.m.); Friday, Nov. 17 , (9 a.m.-noon); Friday, Nov. 17, (1:30-3 p.m.); Saturday, Nov. 18, (9 a.m.-noon); Sunday, Nov. 19, (9 a.m.-noon); Monday, Nov. 20, (9-11 a.m.).

For more information on how to participate in Operation Christmas Child, or to view gift suggestions, call 937 374-0761 or visit samaritanspurse.org/occ. Participants can donate $9 per shoebox gift online through “Follow Your Box” and receive a tracking label to discover its destination. Those who prefer the convenience of online shopping can browse samaritanspurse.org/buildonline to select gifts matched to a child’s specific age and gender, then finish packing the virtual shoebox by adding a photo and personal note of encouragement.

Operation Christmas Child is a project of Samaritan’s Purse, an international Christian relief and evangelism organization headed by Franklin Graham. The mission of Operation Christmas Child is to demonstrate God’s love in a tangible way to children in need around the world and, together with the local church worldwide, to share the Good News of Jesus Christ. Since 1993, Operation Christmas Child has collected and delivered more than 146 million gift-filled shoeboxes to children in more than 160 countries and territories.