Young, old students pitch in packing boxes

After almost three weeks of donating items, Stettler Elementary School and Stettler Middle School packed boxes for Operation Christmas Child

After almost three weeks of donating items, Stettler Elementary School and Stettler Middle School packed boxes for Operation Christmas Child last Wednesday.

Operation Christmas Child is an annual project where people fill a shoebox with a variety of items — personal hygiene products, candy, toys and school supplies. The shoeboxes are then distributed to children in poor countries at Christmastime.

Last week, the school gyms were crowded with students packing boxes. Stettler Middle and Elementary together packed 332 boxes, which is up from 300 last year. The high school, William E. Hay, managed to pack 264 for a total of 596.

Organizer Christy Brennan said that it’s worthwhile for students to be aware of less-fortunate kids throughout the world.

“Our kids are in such an environment of ‘want, want want,’ ” said Brennan, who added that kids “get really excited” about the prospect of filling the boxes.

The total amount of boxes going out from Stettler and area this year is 1,559, she said.

The boxes will go on to Red Deer and Calgary before being distributed to children in Guatemala, Venezuela, Sierra Leone, Nicaragua, Haiti and elsewhere.

reporter@stettlerindependent.com