Xavier, 4, sorts tins for the Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child bottle drive. (Special to The News)

Xavier, 4, sorts tins for the Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child bottle drive. (Special to The News)

Maple Ridge gives generously to Samaritan’s Purse bottle drive

Will go towards the Operation Christmas Child shoebox campaign

Maple Ridge residents gave generously during a recent bottle drive in support of the Samaritan’s Purse shoebox campaign.

Volunteers raised $1,174.53 at a bottle drive on April 9 – money that will go towards projects for the Operation Christmas Child like the sewing of skirts, shorts, dresses, and various bags of different sizes. Sanitary kits that are put together for the boxes, the purchase of soap for the soap bags, and the making of the 2×2 inch blocks

“This amount of money will be very useful and spent with care,” said Barb Gustafson with the charity.

Because of the generosity of each one who brought bottles/cans we were able to receive $1174.53 plus some donations.

The charity is planning another bottle drive in late July that will focus on school supplies for the boxes.

Xavier, 4, counted cans with his grandmother during the fundraising campaign, telling her that he loved counting cans at the end of the day.

“It is great to start kids young to learn compassion, care, and love for others and how they can make a difference in the lives of children,” said Gustafson.

Boxes are eventually shipped to countries in Africa or South America for those who have little and will likely be receiving nothing for Christmas.

Provincially 53,789 shoeboxes were packed during last year’s campaign, up about 17 per cent from the 2020 campaign that saw 46,066 shoeboxes filled.

READ MORE: Bottle campaign for Operation Christmas Child in Maple Ridge

ALSO: Residents of Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows donate generously to Samaritan’s Purse shoebox campaign

In Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows residents packed 5,056 last year, up from 4,094 in 2020.

Across Canada, 413,875 shoeboxes were packed in 2021, which was an increase of more than 40,000 from 2020’s total.

According to Samaritan’s Purse Canada, a Christian relief and development organization, Operation Christmas Child has collected and hand-delivered almost 200 million gift-filled shoeboxes to children in over 170 countries hurt by war, poverty, natural disaster, disease, and famine, since 1993.

The 2022 national collection week for Operation Christmas Child is Nov. 14-20.

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