Last year a few of us bloggers did a very special blogger tag, called #OperationBlogger, and we're doing it again this year. It's a charitable tag, to remind us that in the exciting run-up to Christmas many people won't have much of a Christmas, and to encourage other bloggers to help out and do our bit to help out some underprivileged children, who may have never had a Christmas present before. Operation Christmas Child is a very simple concept that has brought joy and happiness to so many children less fortunate than us, who never had the childhood many of us were lucky to have.
All the tag involves is getting an empty shoebox, and filling it with bits and pieces for the child, and then blogging about it and helping to spread the word on Twitter with the hashtag #OperationBlogger. It only costs £10-20 to do, and is a lot of fun to see it all build up. I've been doing this every year since I was little, it started in Primary school, and then I continued to do it through Secondary school and University. Last year around 7 of us did the tag in the end, and this year we want to make it much bigger and make an even bigger difference.
We need to start this now, as the boxes have to be sent out in November to reach the children in time for Christmas. You can make your own box and fill it yourself, or you can just order one that's already filled, online here. You can also find out where your nearest drop-off point is here.
To create a box you will need one medium sized shoe box. Wrap the box and lid separately in Christmas wrapping paper. Then choose the age range and gender you want to send your box to. Before you spend all your money on the gifts to go inside the box, put £3 aside for the shoebox donation, to cover postage costs. Don't worry, it doesn't cost too much to fill. I usually spend around £20 on mine, but some people spent around £10 last year (go to places like Poundland, Savers, Superdrug etc), and that pays for a lot of gifts that the child will love. Just think...£20 is the price of one or two items of make-up. Surely you can give up buying your MAC powder or YSL Nail Polish for a few weeks to do this?
What you could put in the box:
Toys: Bear, soft toy, tennis ball, finger puppet, jigsaw, yo-yo, building blocks, small musical instrument. For boys: trucks and cars, For girls: dolls, clip on earrings, etc.
Educational Supplies: Felt pens, pens, pencils, pencil sharpener, eraser, colouring book, notepad, picture or puzzle book, chalk, pencil case, stickers, etc.
Hygiene Items: Toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, comb, hair clips, bar of soap, flannel, etc.
Other Items: Sweets (sell-by date to be at least March of the following year), gloves, scarf, sunglasses, cap, hat, bangles, necklaces etc.
All gifts should be new, please include items from each category.
What not to put in:
No Food; especially chocolate - non-chocolate sweets are allowed
No medicine or vitamins of any kind
No war related items; toy guns, soldiers or knives of any kind
No clothing; other than listed above
No fragile items; glass containers, mirrors.
No liquids; including blow bubbles, shampoo, bubble bath, toiletry sets or aerosols.
No dangerous items; sharp objects, scissors or razors
Nothing of a political nature
No hand-knitted stuffed toys without a CE mark
You can see the posts of the other bloggers who took part, as well as my one.
So, are you in?!
If so, get started, write about it, spread the word, and use the hashtag, and I'll add you to the list :)