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    There is nothing more priceless than the look on a child’s face on Christmas morning; however, some children wake up on this much anticipated day only to receive nothing.  Methodist University and Samaritan’s Purse are making a concerted effort to make sure that every child around the globe receives a shoe box filled with goodies in order to have a wonderful Christmas.
    {mosimage}“We have had the wonderful opportunity to be a part of this event for several years,” said Michael Safley, vice president for university relations and campus ministry. “We are the regional collection site for Operation Christmas Child.”
    National Collection week is Monday, Nov. 17 through Monday, Nov. 24 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Gift-filled shoe boxes can be dropped off in front of Reeves Auditorium on the campus of Methodist University. Tractor trailers will be on site to receive the shoe boxes. The boxes will be transported to the distribution site in Charlotte to be shipped all over the world. 
    The directions for packing the shoe box are fairly straightforward. First you have to decide whether the gift will be for a boy or a girl. The label can be downloaded and printed by visiting the Web site www.samaritanspurse.com. Next, select the age group of the child which includes: 2-4-years-old, 5-9-years-old or 10-14-years-old. The box should be filled with gifts that will bring joy to the child of that particular age group. Some gift ideas are school supplies, toy cars, hygiene items, dolls, stuffed animals, hard candy, lollipops, yo-yo’s, T-shirts, socks, coloring books, educational toys, crayons and other items. Do not pack toy guns, knives, chocolate, food, liquids, lotions, perishable or breakable items. Donate $7 to help cover shipping overseas and other project costs. Place a rubber band around the shoe box before dropping it off to the collection site at Methodist University.  {mosimage}
    Since 1993, more than 61 million shoe boxes have been packed with gifts for children and shipped around the globe. Last year 7.6 million shoe boxes were collected and more than 100,000 volunteers helped inspect and prepare boxes for shipment. Samaritan’s Purse is an international Christian relief and evangelism organization that provides spiritual and physical aid to victims of war, poverty, disease and natural disaster. 
“We expect to collect thousands of shoe boxes this year,” said Safley. “It feels good knowing that children will have something to open for the Christmas holidays.”
    For more information call 630-7043 or visit www.samaritanspurse.com.  

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