Our Connect Volunteers work together in local teams to enthuse and equip churches and groups in their communities to take part in Operation Christmas Child by packing shoebox gifts. They also encourage local Christians to partner with us in prayer, to reach out in mission to their friends and local communities, and to sponsor The Greatest Journey; the exciting Bible discovery course offered to children who receive shoeboxes.
Join a Connect Volunteer Team to use your God-given gifting and interest in one of the following areas. As you inspire others in the UK to get involved, more children around the world will experience God’s love through a simple shoebox gift and get to discover, follow and share Jesus.
(Psst…the best kept secret of volunteering in an Operation Christmas Child Connect Team. You can readily fit it in with what you do at home, work, church, etc – and even do this other stuff better, because of the training and support you get from your Operation Christmas Child team.)
Read the different descriptions and stories and consider how God might be calling you.
Encourage and resource those who organise the project each year in their own church. Update them after the campaign about the impact their shoeboxes had and help them plan for next year. If there isn’t a project leader, recruit one! If a church in your area doesn’t take part, make friends there and motivate them to join in.
'What I love about my role is the opportunity to get to know the churches in my local area and getting to meet a lot of new people; all of whom are playing a part in reaching children around the world for Jesus.'
Gillian, Church RelationsWatch her story
Establish the prayer support that’s vital for every team. We’ve seen increased shoebox gifts in local areas where the only difference was more people praying! Get others to experience the faith-building power of prayer, as you update prayer groups and individuals to pray for the impact of Operation Christmas Child here in the UK and around the world, and see extraordinary answers to prayer.
'People come to me with prayer requests and I lead prayer meetings on behalf of Samaritan’s Purse. Through it, I’ve witnessed so many answers to prayer.'
Amanda, PrayerWatch her story
There are few more compelling and fun ways to introduce friends, neighbours and colleagues to our Christian faith than inviting them to pack a shoebox gift. Support and equip those who lead Operation Christmas Child at work, in schools and community groups. Inspire individual Christians and churches to reach out in mission and build friendships in our local communities, as we invite others to do something with us for the sake of children in need.
'We're helping in Jesus’ name by not only telling children out there that there is a God that loves them, but also we’re showing people making the boxes the same thing.'
Adam, Community RelationsRead his story
Do you love communicating good news stories of what God’s doing through His people to change His world? Use the type of media you’re most confident in to inform and inspire others about the impact of Operation Christmas Child in the UK and globally. Sending in press releases to local newspapers, posting on social media, setting up local radio interviews or even TV features – any of these and more will celebrate what God’s doing and prompt more people to pack shoebox gifts.
'I love being the voice of Operation Christmas Child through my local print, radio and television outlets. You know you are making a difference to someone’s life somewhere.'
Pat, Media RelationsWatch her story
Logistics and Church Collections
Each year our amazing community of volunteer teams around the UK receives and checks hundreds of thousands of shoebox gifts and prepares them for export. Lead and support a team of year-round and seasonal volunteers to gather and process shoeboxes from your local area. We stand in awe of the gifted planners and organisers who step forward and love this role.
Working in close partnership with these stalwart volunteers are the many churches around the country who act as shoebox collection points during November.
'I see it as two-fold mission'... ‘I’ve seen the difference a shoebox makes to a child, their family, and their communities...’
Di, Logistics, and Dan, Church CollectionsWatch their story
Lead and develop teams whose members focus on Church and/or Prayer, Community, Media or Logistics activities for Operation Christmas Child in your area. Guide your team to discern together God’s plan for building participation in the project through churches and groups in your community. Then motivate them to action the plan! You’ll also see God use you to coach and grow others in their skills and Christian commitment: what a privilege!
'What I love most is working with volunteers; seeing them develop their skills, and really enjoying the whole project of Operation Christmas Child.'
Steve, LeadingWatch his story