EL CENTRO — Franklin Graham’s Operation Christmas Child has been celebrated and encouraged in Imperial County. Husband and wife dynamic-duo, Darrel and Marilyn Miller, collect shoe boxes filled with toys, school supplies, hygiene products, and other surprises donated by different community members, churches, and agencies to be donated to those in need.
With six processing plants throughout the country, the shoe box surprises are shipped to families and individuals from more than 160 countries, including different locations in the United States.
For the last 20 years, the Millers have watched as the community continued to come together each year to support a group of less-fortunate individuals. The holiday season is known as a time of giving, and that is what the Millers continue to do each year.
Community members, businesses, and agencies are encouraged to donate goodie-filled shoe boxes. Shoe boxes were dropped off at KGBA in El Centro. Sixteen volunteers collected and loaded shoe boxes, from Monday, November 18, to Monday, November 25.
This year’s collection brought in 1,723 shoe boxes, which is more than last year. Before the boxes can be shipped out, all food, candy, liquids, lotions, and hand sanitizers are removed. These items are donated to other ministries. This year, they have been donated to the Betty Jo McNeece Receiving Home in El Centro to be used in their Christmas stockings.
“Last year, 2018, we had 1,527 boxes,” said Marilyn Miller. “We thank KGBA very heartily for allowing us to do our final collection and loading this year and the last two years.”
The Millers delivered their load of shoe boxes to the Foothill Church in El Cajon to be processed for shipping.