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Operation Christmas Child benefits 15,463 children internationally

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Residents of Jefferson, Lewis, Oswego, Oneida, and Herkimer counties have donated 15,463 shoe boxes filled with gifts to the Operation Christmas Child outreach mission of the Samaritan’s Purse organization.

Boxes include school supplies, hygiene items, stuffed animals, and small toys. The amount of boxes is up 16.5 percent from donations in the five-county area in 2011, according to a news release.

People interested in continuing to send gifts to children, ages two to 14, in areas of disaster, poverty, disease and war can create a box online, at www.samaritanspurse.org/occ.

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