Operation Christmas Child organized their first bottle drive of the year earlier in May this year. (Barbara Gustafson/Special to The News)

Operation Christmas Child organized their first bottle drive of the year earlier in May this year. (Barbara Gustafson/Special to The News)

Shoebox campaign to bring Christmas to kids around the world again this year

Drop-off for Operation Christmas Child will take place Nov. 15 through 21

The shoebox campaign that brings Christmas cheer to kids across the globe, will be starting off soon.

This year’s Operation Christmas Child drop-off dates are Nov. 15 through 21 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. said Barb Gustafson, the shoebox campaign organizer for Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows.

“People in Ridge Meadows bring their gift filled shoebox to their organization, school or church. They can also bring their box to Ridge Church (Maple Ridge Baptist Church) during drop off dates,” she said, adding that many people had been working and collecting all year, articles to put into a shoebox.

The shoebox campaign aims to bring necessities for disadvantaged children, including school supplies, hygiene items, toys and a stuffed animal.

ALSO READ: Maple Ridge Christmas Fest still in planning stages

Last year, over 9 million shoeboxes were collected from 100 receiving countries worldwide and given to children living in over 100 countries. Last year, Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows alone collected 4,048 shoeboxes.

“That is 4,048 children whose lives have been touched through the generosity of folks living in Ridge Meadows. These needy children will know that someone far away cares about them and they will be given a measure of hope and happiness and love,” she said.

The local organizers for the campaign have also been raising money to buy supplies for the shoebox campaign through bottle drives.

The August Bottle drive brought in $1,929 plus some cash donations and Krispy Kream sales.

“The money was quickly used to buy especially school supplies as they were on good sales at the time. Other items were bought for the boxes as well,” said Gustafson.

READ MORE: Ridge Meadows-based group collecting empties to bring Christmas cheer


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