Local Church Part of ‘Operation Child’

Local Church Part of ‘Operation Child’

Through Monday, Nov. 25, local residents can participate in an international effort to support the less fortunate during the holiday season, thanks to Central Baptist Church of Alameda. The church has agreed to serve as a drop-off location for “Operation Christmas Child,” a program that delivers gift-filled shoeboxes to children in more than 160 countries and territories during the holidays.

The church is collecting gifts suitable for children small enough to fit in a shoeboxes and may include: toys, school supplies or hygiene items. Operation Christmas Child — a program of “The Samaritan’s Purse” — partners with local churches across the globe to deliver “tangible expressions of God’s love” to children affected by war, disease, disaster, poverty and famine. According to the organization, for many of these children, it will be the first gift they have ever received. This year’s goal has been set to collect enough gifts to contribute to 11 million children worldwide.

For a $9 donation, donors may track their shoebox gifts online through “Follow Your Box.” Those who prefer the convenience of online shopping can browse www.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.

Since 1993, Operation Christmas Child has collected and delivered more than 168 million gift-filled shoeboxes to children worldwide.

Central Baptist Church is located at 2133 Central Ave. The church is open to receive donations: today, Thursday, Nov. 21, and Sunday, Nov. 24, from 1 to 4 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, Nov. 22 and 23, from 10 a.m. to noon and Monday, Nov. 25, from 8 to 11 a.m.