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The Shoe Boxes are a miracle gift

Some years ago, I witnessed, by chance, a shipment of kiwi Christmas shoe boxes arriving in a hilltop village in Myanmar. I will never forget the joy and wonder in the eyes and actions of the children who each received a shoe box.

Operation Christmas Child is a hands-on way for you to gift and honour children in need across the world by filling shoeboxes with toys, hygiene items, school supplies, and fun gifts. The boxes are collected locally and distributed all across the world. New Zealand packed shoe boxes go to the Pacific Islands and further.

Packing a Christmas Shoe Box: Boxes are packed specifically for boys and for girls. You can choose the age and the gender.

Robyn Balfour is the local and regional co-ordinator of Operation Christmas Child.

“People are very generous,” Robyn said. “Every year we send hundreds of boxes from the Coromandel.

“These children have almost nothing to call their own. This is a tangible way to provide God’s love to children in need around the world. Every family and household is invited to use the school holiday time to collect a box and fill it with things a child would need and love to use.” The cost for shipping each box is $12.50. Inside the pamphlet you receive with your box, there is a perforated area to put your cash inside, or, when you pay online, you can follow your shoe box,” says Robyn.

Getting your Christmas Shoe Box: “The starting point is the distribution of the empty shoe boxes so that every household can fill a box or more than one. This is what we are doing now,”says Robyn. All the churches have shoe boxes plus The Informer office in 14 Monk Street and Coghill Café in Coghill Street.

Whangamata Baptist Church (Doreen) is also a contact and collection point.

This article is an appeal for other communities to provide for Christmas Shoe Boxes. Robyn Balfour will help you and provide the resources. 

The National Collection Week is 21 to 26 October but it is best to start now. Contact Robyn Email:

The Shoe Box is a gift of joy and wonder for children who have very little.