Every November is collection week for Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes. (We had much younger kids in this post! Man, where does time go?!) Summer and fall is the perfect time to start thinking of Operation Christmas Child ideas.
[Having your child/family participate in child sponsorship through an organization like Compassion or World Vision is also a great way to build an ongoing relationship and come along side a family in another country.]
I love how simple this project is and how involved children can be.
Each child can put together a shoebox for a child their same age and gender and give ideas and input for what is going into the box.
Operation Christmas Child Ideas
This is a great project to have your children earn extra money for and purchase themselves. If your children are young, you could match what they earn so they will have enough.
Find small jobs that don’t normally get done around your house and set a pay for each of them and give your children the list. They learn to work and how earning money works and you get a few extra jobs done.
Bake Sale/Lemonade Stand:
Another idea would be to have a bake sale/lemonade stand on your corner or as part of a garage sale and have the profits go toward the Operation Christmas Child Boxes.
Operation Christmas Child Box Ideas:
After the money is earned, you have to come up with what exactly to put into a small box. Of course Samaritan’s Purse has ideas for you on their website.
Be sure you remember: no liquids, toothpaste, candy/food, war themed toys, or breakable items.
Not knowing where your box will be going to can make a little difficult to buy for. You don’t know the weather or any cultural differences. If you know where you box is heading you’ll know if you can include things like scarves and gloves.
I imagine that kids will be kids throughout the world, though, so what your children are into is probably a good starting point.
The following list of Operation Christmas ideas consists of options for boys and girls and the littles to the older kids. A mixture of fun and practical is a good idea. And I know my kids love receiving “real” grown up things. Tools are a fun idea for any hands on, creative kid.
Small, real, musical instrument (some things just aren’t worth getting at the dollar store)
Balls (deflate the ball and include a ball pump with extra needles)
Clothes (fun depending on the age 😉 )
Coloring Books (age appropriate)
Toothbrush (no toothpaste)
Soap (packaged in zipped bags to keep the smell contained)
Blanket (small, lightweight especially since it may be going to a warm weather location)
Draw String Bag
Sewing Kit and Fabric
Solar Powered Lanterns
First Aid Kit (without medicine or liquids)
Screwdrivers (Head to Lowe’s or Home Depot for this and the following items)
Nails (in their package)
Watch the back to school sales every July and August. It’s a great time to stock up on most of these things. For example, Crayola crayons are much nice than the dollar store ones and you’d be able to purchase them for the same price during the sales.
Pens & Pencils
I love starting early in the season focusing on others, and this is an easy way to do it.
There are over 55 Operation Christmas Child ideas to help you pack your box this year. Have you done the shoeboxes with your kids before? Any favorite packing ideas to share?