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Involve Others! The most surprising part of being involved in charity work is that the person you help is not the only one who receives the blessing – but the shoppers, crafters, planners, packers, helpers, etc., love it as well. The more you involve other people, the greater the joy!
My friend Cynthia and her family pack over 3,000 shoeboxes each year for Operation Christmas Child for the past several years. They didn’t start out donating that much of course. There was a slow growth over 20 years to get to this large number. And through the years they learned that in order to donate more, it means ALOT of shopping, preparation and just plain WORK! But what is so special is the many people they have met, and the many organizations and groups they got to partner with.
Cynthia first started donating as a family homeschool project. It gave them so much JOY, the family couldn’t help but tell their neighborhood, co-workers and friends, who then wanted to help. Then their 4-H community used it as a great way for their kids to learn service through shopping and crafting. Local stores and businesses wanted to know why they purchased so many items. Inspired, they gave donations of items and many employees volunteered at their packing parties.
News started to spread, and churches and community groups asked her to share about crafts, donations and how to frugally donate when on limited incomes (like me!). When she received donations that couldn’t be used for one project, she networked with other local charities and groups.
See how the circle of blessing grew and grew?
Last year Cynthia met with a local adult community. They were eager to work, to use their time and be productive. (Joy with Purpose!) Now once a month, Cynthia bring them various projects. THEY ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT! Everyone arrives early, stays late and begs her to come again! There are many small but time-consuming tasks to pack 3000 gift-filled shoeboxes: folding thousands of t-shirts, rolling washcloths around soap and individually bagging them, packing pencil cases, decorating tops, making hair bows, etc.
The Recreation Director posts the meeting on the calendar, provides coffee and cake and even happily participates! They work so fast, it’s hard to keep up. There is always lots of laughter and chatting.
Involve Others: Gather a Group of People to Help
Consider involving others in your shoebox packing
Consider asking people to help you with your local food pantry.
Get people involved with any one of your ministries.
Sometimes doing the entire project of any sort can be a burden. BUT if you ask someone to just handle one small part, you might be surprised at how excited and eager they become – AND it makes your work load easier!