Community Voices

Operation Christmas Child

Samaritan’s Purse opened their facility and began loading what they call “shoe boxes” full of gifts to be shipped to children around the world. At their West Coast facility in Fullerton, the warehouse area was converted into an assembly line of 22 workstations, each consisting of a dozen workers, and a “yellow-jacket” leader.

Each year, volunteers, many from various companies and organizations, come in groups to offer their time and effort to support this project. Volunteers paused to watch a video, and to give credit to groups from Nevada, North Carolina and Canada who had come to participate on the project. These Samaritan’s Purse members had come to work over the Thanksgiving holiday.

Huge containers were filled with colorful gifts such as toys, writing items, stuffed animals, games, small blankets and other things that young children in hardship areas may never receive. These are delivered to the workstations where they are packed, marked as appropriate for age and gender, and then loaded into the shipping boxes. When full, the shipping boxes were placed on long conveyor tracks that moved the boxes to the shipping area where they were palletized, shrink wrapped and tagged for their destination. Forklifts then loaded the pallets into trailers that were driven to the transportation centers for shipment.

The lines began operating on Nov. 23, and on Nov. 26, they had just loaded the sixth trailer. There were 58,000 shoe boxes that had been packed and shipped since they started. Public support for Samaritan’s Purse in 2020 was over $3 billion.