Oct. 23, 2012
For Immediate Release
(Photo courtesy of Operation Christmas Child)
By Mary Kutter and Jordan Cornett, student news writers
CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Campbellsville University will serve as Taylor County’s Operation Christmas Child (OCC) drop-off location this year. OCC is a nationwide effort through Samaritan¹s Purse to give individually packed Christmas shoeboxes to impoverished children around the world.
Last year 3,806 OCC boxes were collected in Taylor County, and this year’s goal is to collect 5,000 boxes, according to a letter from Dr. G. Ted Taylor, OCC Taylor County relay center coordinator and professor of Christian studies and director of leadership/ character development institute at Campbellsville University.
“We need your help to reach our goal, but more importantly, the shoe box gifts open doors for presenting the Good News of Jesus Christ,” said Taylor. “The boxes are filled with tangible items and also intangible gifts such as faith, hope and love. Many children accept Christ as a result of what is contained in the boxes and are then discipled.”
Taylor said, “Our theme is ‘Together for God’s glory.’ I really believe that OCC can bring our campus together, and for a great cause. We want everyone to be involved at some level. Just as OCC has brought the freshman class together in Christ for the past seven years, it can do the same for our campus and community.”
Campbellsville University began their involvement with the organization in 2005 through FIRST CLASS, a freshman program designed to introduce first-year students to campus and the Christian atmosphere of the university. The effort began with only 30 boxes the initial year, but has grown substantially since. Last year’s freshmen raised over 1,000 boxes, and the number is expected to jump even more as the university transitions to a relay center.
The national collection week for OCC shoebox gifts is scheduled for Nov. 12 to 19. Gifts may be dropped off at Campbellsville University’s Theater Arts Studio, formerly the Fisher Auto Parts building, located at 307 N. Court St. near CVS Pharmacy.
The boxes are delivered to approximately 130 countries and each year the charity delivers millions of shoebox gifts around the world to needy children.
According to their website, “The mission of Operation Christmas Child is to demonstrate God’s love in a tangible way to needy children around the world, and together with the local church worldwide, to share the Good News of Jesus Christ.”
“Operation Christmas Child unifies our campus as we are passionate about blessing needy children at Christmas around the world. This is a way that we can share the love of Jesus,” Taylor said, “When we bless others at Campbellsville University then our campus in return receives the blessing of God. This year we are asking every student at CU to get involved in blessing children through OCC.”
Participants are encouraged to use a shoebox or plastic container to pack their gifts. OCC provides labels in which to mark the age and gender the box is intended for. There are some restrictions on gift and toy choices so it is important to go to www.samaritanspurse.org/occ to understand what is acceptable. A $7 donation is also asked for to help cover shipping and other project expenses.
The drop-off area is open Nov. 12-19. Hours are as follows:
- Monday, Nov. 12 through Thursday, Nov. 15: 5-7 p.m.;
- Friday, Nov. 16: 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.;
- Saturday, Nov. 17: 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.;
- Sunday, Nov. 18: 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.; and
- Monday, Nov. 19 – 9 a.m. – 10 a.m.
Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with more than 3,600 students offering 63 undergraduate options, 17 master’s degrees, five postgraduate areas and eight pre-professional programs. The website for complete information is campbellsville.edu.