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April Item of the Month for OCC Shoeboxes ~ Stuffed Animals

Operation Christmas Child item of the month:  stuffed animals.Samaritan's Purse has suggested items of the month for packing Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes, and for April that is stuffed animals!  That is one of my favorite things to put in a shoebox...they're SO cute!!  We actually pack them in every shoebox, if you want to know why, check out our post: "Why we pack Stuffed Animals in all our Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes."  Samaritan's Purse has shared a number of stories of kids who were really excited about their stuffed animal (or doll, but they're pretty close):

While stuffed animals are a GREAT item to include, they can be one of the more
costly as you want to be sure to get one that will hold up to all that "loving".  Here are some ways we've found to get good deals on stuffed animals:
  • Holiday clearances are a great time to pick them up!  Often you can find them 50%-90% off...this month is a good time to look for them with Easter clearance.
  • Crafting your own is another option!  We have a friend who crochets them for us, you can also sew them.  If you're less crafty, here's a No-Sew Fleece Bunny Tutorial my mom wrote.
  • While it is important to only send NEW stuffed animals in OCC shoeboxes, however, many people give stuffed animals as gifts, or use as decoration, then are ready to get rid of them, and they are still like new.  So, we've lately found that a local thrift store has stuffed animals at a good price.  We carefully look through them to pick out the ones that look new. 
  • Also, people collected Beanie Babies years ago, so we've actually gotten some donated, and I've heard others have too.   We actually made this poster.  Some people have had good success with online local sale groups (either donated or sold at a very good price), or putting up a poster at their work or apartment building.
Wanted:  Beanie Babies for Operation Christmas Child Poster

Photos (exclusive of poster) Courtesy of Samaritan’s Purse.

1 comment:

Lin K said...

Small stuffed animals and dolls work really well too. We pack shoe boxes only for the older kids. There isn't much space for a stuffed animal after packing (girls) a skirt & tee top, socks, flip flops, drawstring bag filled with 6 rewashable pads, 2 pr panties, clothesline & clothespins, bar soap. Then there are the usual school supplies (pencils, pens, erasers, paper clips, pointed scissors, etc. packed into a clear water bottle, a pencil pouch & colored pencils, 5x7" folders filled with printed paper for artwork, lined paper pads for school, a game, plastic slinky, bendable fun toy, toothbrush,... So we place a small 3" to 4" animal or teen doll that I handcraft into each box. For the older boys, we slip a small animal into each box alongside tools, fishing kit, clothes, etc.

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