‘Operation Christmas Child’ Seeking Volunteers

Various volunteer roles are currently available with Samaritan’s Purse through “Operation Christmas Child” in the West Central Pennsylvania region.

By serving year-round with Samaritan’s Purse through Operation Christmas Child, volunteers will be helping children in more than 100 countries around the world. Each shoebox gift can bring “Good News and Great Joy” to a child in need.

Currently, the West Central PA Area is actively seeking volunteers who are interested in serving on its logistics and administrative support teams in Clearfield, Jefferson, and Indiana Counties.

Logistics volunteers welcome shoebox contributors at local collection sites. These volunteers serve as the face of the ministry when shoeboxes and or donations are dropped off to begin their journey around the world.

Administrative support volunteers organize and manage resources and information for regional and area teams. Their work is vital to bringing “Great News and Great Joy” to children in need.

“Operation Christmas Child is so much more than packing shoebox gifts,” expressed Arianne Greslick, central drop-off team leader. “I’ve seen first-hand how it touches so many lives beyond the recipient.

“From the individual filling the shoebox to the countless volunteers who handle and transport them from origin to destination for those ultimately receiving these generous gifts, it truly takes an army.”

Greslick has been “blessed” to volunteer for a few years, but 2020 was her first year as the central drop-off leader at First Baptist Church, Curwensville.

“There were many unknowns and challenges to overcome, but God was faithful. In times of uncertainty, I witnessed such an outpouring of hope…it’s truly a blessing to have a part in such a wonderful organization.”

Nearly 575,000 volunteers worldwide — with more than 270,000 of those in the United States — are involved in collecting, shipping, and distributing shoebox gifts.

Interested individuals must complete and submit an online application.

For more information or to apply for volunteer opportunities through Operation Christmas Child, please visit https://www.samaritanspurse.org/operation-christmas-child/volunteer-year-round/.

For more information or questions about the local volunteer opportunities, individuals may also contact Sunderlin via e-mail at [email protected] or phone at 814-496-4456.

About Operation Christmas Child

In 2020, some 7,809,410 million gifts were packed nationwide for the Samaritan’s Purse project Operation Christmas Child, with 415,403 built online.

It was a record year for Build a Shoebox Online. Because of partnership in communities across the United States, more people than ever chose to participate in this way.

Combined with those collected from partnering countries in 2020, the ministry is now sending more than 9,113,853 million shoebox gifts to children around the world.

Locally, the West Central PA Area collected 13,835 shoebox gifts. The area encompasses the communities of Clearfield, Jefferson, and Indiana Counties.

Each gift-filled shoebox — packed with fun toys, school supplies, and hygiene items — is often the first gift these children have ever received.

Since 1993, Operation Christmas Child has collected and delivered more than 186 million gift-filled shoeboxes to children in more than 160 countries and territories.

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