I’ve been hinting an event where we can crochet for charity for awhile…and now I’m finally able to announce it! I would love for you to join Operation Crochet Shoeboxes, where we will be crocheting items that will get sent around the world to kids for Christmas.
Will You Help me crochet for charity this September?
As many of you know…crocheting for charity is a passion of mine.
Ever since then, I’ve been brainstorming more ways I can serve here in America.
It was a few months ago that I started really thinking hard. How could I use the gift of crochet to help others…and also bring God glory at the same time?
I googled “crochet for charity” and was surprised by the results. In the search results I saw a post called the “crazy shoebox lady.” It was about a lady who crocheted tons of items for…
OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD!
It hit me all of a sudden – I could run a CAL for Operation Christmas child!
Now, if you’re unfamiliar with this organization, don’t worry. Keep on reading, and I will explain how everything works!
What is Operation Christmas Child (OCC)?
I have been serving every year with Operation Christmas child since I was 13 years old. I know that their mission aligns with mine. So there is no one else I would rather support!
What exactly does OCC do? Well, they collect shoeboxes filled with gifts, and then they send them to children around the world every year for Christmas.
Every year, people like you and me are able to fill shoeboxes with goodies and donate them. Churches host “shoebox filling” events, families fill their own boxes…it really is a big thing!
OCC is also under the larger umbrella of Samaritan’s Purse, also a non-profit organization.
The Crochet Along for Charity
You might be wondering…how does this relate to crochet?
Well, OCC highly encourages the making of handmade gifts to fill the shoeboxes! So I thought, what better way to raise awareness than by hosting a crochet-along?
If you are unfamiliar with the concept of a crochet-along (CAL for short) here is how it works:
Generally, a CAL is an event where parts of a pattern are released over a series of time, and crocheters all make it together.
For THIS CAL, however, there will be 1 new crochet pattern released per week. Each pattern will be an item you can fill your shoebox with. By the end of the CAL, you should have a shoebox filled with crocheted items!
There is lots more info on how the CAL works below. But before I go in detail, I really want to make sure we’re clear on the MISSION of this event.
Operation Christmas Child is a Christian organization dedicated to sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.
To me, the gospel is the most important message. If there is one reason I am hosting this CAL it is for the sake of the gospel, and God’s glory.
Although this blog makes me money…I never, ever, want money to be my only motivation for blogging.
My go to verse on this is Colossians 3:17 –
And whatever you do, whether in word or in deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
If I can use this platform I have to spread the gospel and give God glory – then all of it will be worth it.
So that is why I am hosting this event. My hope and prayer is that we can come together as a crochet community and bring God glory through this.
Will you join me?
Yes, Count me In!
If you are ready to join the CAL, woohoo! I am beyond excited and would love to have you.
This crochet-along is completely FREE, meaning you do not have to pay a fee to join. (There will be some optional things you can pay for, but this is not required).
So, in order to join for FREE, there are a few things you need to do:
- First, sign up for my email list right here. By doing this, you will get all the CAL updates, and I will be able to know exactly how many people have joined.
- Second, join my Facebook group right here. This is where the community aspect will take place – where we can post pictures of our projects and encourage each other!
- Third, follow me on Instagram and post the picture below this list to show you’re participating! (This is optional, but I would LOVE it if you posted!)
- Choose your path – will you crochet for a little boy or a little girl? TODAY the patterns lists & materials have been released! Make sure you browse the boys patterns & the girls patterns before you decide.
Screenshot or save the photo below & post on Instagram or Facebook with the hashtag #mycrochetshoebox – so we can see everyone who is participating!
Finally, please keep reading about the event and make sure you know the details. I wouldn’t want you to miss out on anything!
How it Works
Ok, you’re all signed up…now what?
The CAL officially starts today, September 8! The Materials List & Pattern Pages have been released. Next Tuesday will be the first day we actually start crocheting together.
Until that happens, I thought I would give you a more detailed overview of what everything will look in a step-by-step format.
Step 1: Join the CAL
Of course, the very first thing that needs to be done is the joining! If you haven’t already, follow the steps a few paragraphs above to make sure you’re all signed up. (you can also use the form below!)
Step 2: Choose Your Path & Collect Materials
That’s right, so there will actually be 2 PATTERNS released per week: one for girls and one for boys. You do not have to make the patterns for both.
Instead, you can choose your path…will you bless a little girl or a little boy?
Eventually, you will also decide the age category of your box. The categories are 2-4, 5-9, and 10-14 for both girls and boys.
The patterns in the CAL are mostly geared toward the 5-9 age category – but there will also be options to customize that if you’d like!
Once you decide on “your path” make sure you start collecting materials this week so you’re prepared!
Step 3: Find a Shoebox
Another thing you can do before the first pattern releases is find a shoebox. This can be any standard sized shoebox that you have laying around!
There are also OCC specific shoeboxes that can be found in many Hobby Lobby’s. However, these may not be available till closer to November. To find out, visit your Hobby Lobby. Boxes will be near the front somewhere.
The important thing is, you have a shoebox. We’ll be filling it throughout the CAL!
Step 4: Decide how you will participate
I mentioned awhile ago that there are some optional paid opportunities as apart of this CAL.
There is no required fees to join. However, there IS the option to purchase the ad-free bundle of all the CAL patterns up front!
This way, you will not have to wait each week to get the pattern. You’ll have them all straight away, and you can print out as needed!
The best part about this option is that I will be donating 100% of the profits to Operation Christmas Child. My goal is to raise at least $1000…will you help me get there?
If you are not able to buy this, please don’t worry. Just your participation is AWESOME! Read on to see the schedule of the designs as they release.
Step 5: Crochet Your Items
From September 15 – November 3rd, we will be doing step 4! There will be boys and girls patterns released during these weeks that you can fill your shoebox with.
Here is the schedule we will be following:
- Sept. 8: Materials List & Ad-Free Bundle released
- Sept. 15: Week 1 patterns released – scrubbies for girls, clownfish for boys
- Sept. 22: Week 2 patterns released – puppy ami for girls, footbag (aka hack sack) for boys
- Sept. 29: Week 3 patterns released – headband for girls, basketball backpack for boys
- Oct. 6: Week 4 patterns released – beanie for girls, basketball scrubbie for boys
- Oct. 13: Week 5 patterns released – flower clips for girls, hat for boys
- Oct. 20: Week 6 patterns released
- Oct. 27: Week 7 patterns released
- Nov. 3: Week 8 patterns released
- Nov 10: Fill Shoe boxes with other items
- Nov 16: Nation Collection Week Starts
Curious what the patterns will be? You can now see them all!!
Step 5: Pray…and Post!
If there is ONE thing I would ask you to do as you’re crocheting, it would be PRAY.
Pray over the items you’re making and the little boy or girl who will receive them. I believe God is able to make sure your box is put into the exact child’s hands who needs it.
Another thing you can do while crocheting (much less important, but still fun!) is post pictures of your items on Instagram or in the Facebook group. Use these pictures to bless and encourage others with what we’re doing together!
Step 5: Supplement with other items
You may have noticed in the schedule above that the ninth week is the time to fill your shoebox with other items.
What exactly does this mean?
Well, the crocheted items are a GREAT starting point for your shoebox. And they will take up a lot of room.
BUT…if you are able, I highly recommend adding a few other filler items! Boxes generally contain things like school supplies, and bed/bath items.
Because I’ve served with OCC for many years, I’ve seen a lot of items come through! There are some things that are not allowed to be included, such as any food items or liquid items.
I have made an amazon list with my recommended fillers that I would love for you to check out! It includes a lot of stuff I’ve seen come through in shoeboxes before.
You can also view OCC’s list of do not include items here.
Step 6: Send it off!
November 16-23 is National Collection week, and that is when this event will be officially over! You will have a few options as far as sending off your shoebox:
- Find a local drop off location – the list of locations has not been updated yet, but it will be soon! Then you can see if there is a place nearby you to drop off your shoebox.
- If you are outside the U.S. or just don’t want to go out, you can also mail your shoebox directly to this address: 801 Bamboo Road, Boone, NC 28607
Of course, you don’t need to do ALL of these things yet! Once you’re all joined, I will send you information via email with what is happening each week. But I want you to know beforehand exactly what to expect. 🙂
Let’s Do this Together
Thank you SO much for your interest in this event! It is my hope and prayer that we, as the crochet community, can reach many people for the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Love you all ❤