Thank you for bringing Good News and Great Joy to a child living in Belarus!
Your shoebox gift was one of 95,706 sent to Belarus. We thank God for the thousands of children that have received shoeboxes here since Operation Christmas Child began distributions. While we are not able to provide pictures or information on the specific child who received your individual shoebox, we hope you will be inspired by the photos and stories below.
- Belarus has a population of 9.5 million, with 16% under the age of 15
- 31 years on from Chernobyl disaster, the country is still dealing with the impact on communities affected by the radiation contamination
NATASHA RECEIVED HER SHOEBOX IN AN ORPHANAGE IN THE FORMER SOVIET REPUBLIC OF BELARUS AT THE AGE OF 9:
“It wasn’t just my first Christmas gift—it was my first gift ever. When I held it, there was joy and love in my heart such that I never felt before. I knew there were people out there who cared for me. I was not alone… As my whole class was running around seeing what everyone else got, I just stood in one place in amazement. I couldn’t believe what was going on and what I was seeing in my box… There was a doll, a colouring book, crayons, and hair clips. It took me a minute to let it all sink in. Because of my shoebox gift, I knew that the world wasn’t over yet. There was more to life than what I’d experienced. We were not forgotten. We were still loved.”
OUR LOCAL PARTNERS SAY:
“Thank you for your kind hearts and your open hands. The shoebox ministry of Samaritan’s Purse gives us an opportunity to invite children and parents to the church and to Sunday school.”
“The 14 year olds were very happy rejoicing over every gift in the box, thrilled with even a pencil. They had never received such a gift. One teenage boy, when he opened his box began bounding around the room with each item showing it to everyone.
We went to a poor home where the father recently passed away and the family welcomed us warmly. While we were having tea in another home, a 7 year old girl opened her box taking out the gifts one at a time and thanking us. The grandmother said that the children never received such gifts.
Refugees from Ukraine also came and received gifts. These families were forced to leave their homes, because of the war in Eastern Ukraine. They found Christmas joy in a church in this village through the gifts their children received.
Children in another family told us that they prayed they would receive a Christmas gift and they are now thanking God for gift box they got at the church.
All of them are grateful – and so are we! Thank you Samaritan’s Purse and everyone who shared in sending these wonderful gifts that have blessed many families and our church as well.”
THE IMPACT OF A SHOEBOX:
Every shoebox gift matters! Watch this very special message—to you—from shoebox recipients around the world.
National Leadership Teams
Operation Christmas Child invests in building National Leadership Teams made up of trained local volunteers and staff within over 100 countries. These teams then work alongside many Regional Leadership teams who in turn train local church leaders and teachers. In Belarus 7 teams are working with 500 ministry partners (teams of volunteers in local churches) to make Operation Christmas Child and The Greatest Journey possible each year!
THE GREATEST JOURNEY
Each shoebox gift delivered by Operation Christmas Child is a tangible expression of God’s amazing love. But a shoebox is just the beginning. After receiving a shoebox gift, children have the opportunity to enrol in The Greatest Journey – 12 fun and interactive Bible lessons, where they get the chance to discover who Jesus is and how to begin their own journey of faith. At the end of the course they get to experience a graduation ceremony where they receive a New Testament in their own language.
The Greatest Journey is taught by local volunteers who have been trained to deliver the programme. It is offered free of charge, without obligation and with the consent of the child’s parent or guardian. Over 12,685 children in Belarus have enrolled in this programme since it started.
You can be a part of helping us “go and make disciples of all nations” as Jesus commanded. Sign up for a monthly gift of £5, and each year you will give 12 children study materials, a New Testament, and the opportunity to share their faith with family and friends.
THANK YOU for sharing Good News and Great Joy with children around the world!