From October 19 to November 15, 2020, GLIFY participated in its first Christmas Shoebox Gift Collecting Project led by Brianna Zhang and Frank Xiao. 39 GLIFY volunteers packed 90 shoeboxes filled with presents and donated them to children across the globe.

The project GLIFY participated in was called Operation Christmas Child and was created by a humanitarian aid group by the name of Samaritan’s Purse. OCC is a project where volunteers pack shoeboxes full of gifts to be given to children of low-income families around the world. The GLIFY project leaders worked with members of Samaritan’s Purse to organize the pickup of empty shoeboxes and dropoff of filled ones at a local church. The members of Samaritan’s Purse were very helpful in aiding GLIFY’s first OCC experience and grateful for GLIFY’s donations.

The 39 GLIFY volunteers began their shoebox packing experience by first planning which items to buy and fill their shoeboxes with. Each volunteer signed up to pack a different number of boxes and gauged the number of items they needed to buy by this number. They even took into account the age and gender of the gift recipients to make sure the presents would be well received. Volunteers bought personal care items, clothing, crafts, and toys for the kids to enjoy. 

After buying the gifts for the children, GLIFY volunteers folded the OCC boxes and packed them full of presents. Some even made handmade cards and crafts to give to the kids. The finished boxes were then given a label and handed off to the project leaders to count and give to Samaritan’s Purse. These shoeboxes were then distributed to children globally.

Because of the efforts of GLIFY volunteers, 90 children around the world were able to experience a more joyful Christmas through thoughtful gifts and sincerely written well-wishes. We extend our gratitude to all volunteers and hope everyone had a very merry Christmas. 

Christmas Shoebox Gift Collecting

By: Brianna Zhang