Operation Christmas Child

Central Asia

Many shoebox gifts from the UK are bringing joy to children living in Central Asia!

These shoebox gifts are helping to show the love of Christ, planting seeds, and building goodwill between communities of all faiths and none. However while political and religious sensitivities continue within Central Asia and for the safety of our ministry partners living in restricted areas, they have asked us not to disclose details about the specific country receiving these gifts.

Your lovingly packed shoebox gifts make such a difference! We’ve shared some of our favourite videos, photos, and stories from around the world of children who received shoebox gifts just like yours.

Good News and great joy in Mongolia!

Shoebox gifts bless children in Ukraine…

Share the joy! Watch as these children in Moldova explore their gifts…

Stories From Around the World

Ukraine: The 200 Millionth Shoebox!

Elizabeth Groff, now 28 years old, will never forget receiving a shoebox gift from Samaritan’s Purse when she was living in an orphanage in Ukraine. Here is the special moment when she lovingly placed the special 200 millionth box into the hands of another young orphan girl in Ukraine.

This special shoebox contained items chosen by supporters from the UK, Canada, Australia, Germany, South Korea, and the USA, to celebrate the milestone of sending 200 million shoeboxes since Operation Christmas Child began.


Central Asia: Almira’s Story


Ukraine: Nyeva’s Shoebox

After a recent trip to Ukraine a Samaritan’s Purse staff member shared the following story:

In the past two days, hundreds of Ukrainian children have received shoebox gifts and heard the Gospel. These included orphans and children who have been displaced by the conflict. One of those was 6-year-old Nyeva, who fled with her mother and younger brother from Melitopol. They lived under occupation for months, under a cloud of fear, with very little to eat or drink. Her mother became quite sick because she was giving all of the food to the children. After their neighbours were killed, the mother Yulia, decided she had to get out of there. They boarded a bus in the middle of the night and prayed for safety. It took 18 hours to make the trip. Nyeva is very scared of noise and the dark. She has nightmares. They had left everything behind, including toys. When Nyeva received her shoebox, her eyes lit up, and she smiled. It brought tears to her mother’s eyes. Also, Nyeva’s brother loves Lego but hasn’t had any since they fled their home. Yulia said he often asks when he can have Lego again, but she doesn’t have the resources to buy anything extra. There was Lego in his shoebox!

Namibia: Shoebox Gifts Bring Joy to Deaf Children


Moldova: Shoeboxes for Refugee Families

Local church partners have distributed many shoebox gifts to children who have fled from Ukraine. They have shared about a few such outreach events below:

There was an indescribable joy for the children of Ukraine who received these gifts from Samaritan’s Purse. I asked them if they had received such gifts before, and they all said that it was the first time they had seen and received such gifts. Glory to God that we can bring encouragement and joy in these times to those who are so desperate and need our help.

We hosted over 60 children from Ukraine. Each one of them received a special gift and heard of God’s boundless love. We enjoyed being able to bring smiles to their faces, as at least for a moment they forgot about the pain. Thank you for these gifts full of beautiful surprises. What an honour to be a blessing to others.

Every Ukrainian refugee child that has stayed at our partner church in Moldova during the past two weeks has been given an Operation Christmas Child shoebox of toys and other supplies. Giving the children the shoebox gifts helps calm the stress and anxiety of the parents and the kids. It shows them love and gives the kids and parents something to smile about. The children receive new toys and can play with the other refugee children staying there too. It helps create a happier environment and lets them forget the trauma of their circumstances for a little while. Thank you to Samaritan’s Purse and Operation Christmas Child for this incredible ministry tool. Once parents and their children are in a safe, warm shelter, and have a good meal, and the children are settled with their shoeboxes, our church partners can share Jesus’ love with them.


Asia: A Lasting Hope and Joy in Difficult Circumstances

Five years ago, Chhaya* and her family left their native village and moved to the capital city in search of a better life. Now, as Chhaya turns 12, sadly the family’s living conditions are no better than before. The already overcrowded city meant that they ended up in a single rented room in an area of high deprivation.

Chhaya’s parents both work as labourers, but their income is barely enough for the family of six to survive. With her parents working, Chhaya is often left to take care of her siblings and is unable to attend school. At times when she would see other children go to school while she worked at home, she would feel sad and hopeless.

Two years ago, an informal school was started in a small hut in her neighbourhood by one of our ministry partners. Chhaya was able to join this school, which provided free books and education. The teachers also gave Chhaya a message of hope and told her that Jesus loves her. She learned many songs, and she found much joy and encouragement in these.

One day during her normal classes, Chhaya received a special surprise – a Samaritan’s Purse shoebox gift! It was a moment of great joy, and afterwards she said, “It was the very first time in my life that someone sent me a beautifully packed box full of gifts. I am so happy.”

Chhaya was delighted to learn more about God’s Greatest Gift to us at Christmastime and the Good News of new life and hope in Jesus. It deeply touched her to know that she was loved, cared for, and special to God and to the people who packed her shoebox gift.

*Name changed.


Ukraine: Elizabeth’s Shoebox

Thank You for Packing Shoeboxes

Our Local Partners

One local partner shared that:

Both children and adults felt God’s love and were filled with joy. They were thankful and happy. Distribution of the gift boxes helped our church to build stronger relationships with the community.

Thank You

Thank you so much for packing a shoebox gift and sending love and hope to a child in need. Your generosity makes such a difference!