Serving in the OCC Processing Center Part 2 from Women's Ministry Toolbox

I can’t wait to share the rest of our adventure at the Charlotte Operation Christmas Child (OCC) Processing Center.

If you missed out on Part 1 – be sure to go here to get the scoop on our different volunteer roles.

Today I’m going to take you inside some of the boxes we processed.

There were some really neat and practical items packed in the boxes we processed:

  • Entire outfits (shorts and shirts)
  • Paper rolled up and secured with rubber bands for drawing and writing
  • Water bottles (with toiletries placed inside)
  • Bowls and spoons

Note for child

  • Homemade spin tops made out of CDs
  • A backpack rolled tight and secured (it fit with plenty more room for other goodies!)
  • Salvation bracelets
  • Handwritten notes and drawings from children
  • Razors and solid deodorant for the teens
  • Packs of underwear and packs of undershirts

Some boxes even had notes written directly on the box.

I placed my hand here and prayed for you

I saw the fruit of several packing parties including one from a Women’s Ministry group from Smith Memorial Baptist Church in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Check out these precious notes they sent for each recipient!

WM OCC letter

Oh, ya’all! It makes my eyes tear up!

I love that theses precious women included photos of themselves packing the boxes.

WM OCC letter1

A few other interesting tidbits:

  • Broken shoeboxes (we came across at least 2 during our shift) are taken to the “Shoebox Hospital” so they can still be distributed.
  • We could take breaks and grab a bit to eat as needed
  • We had two specific times of prayer during our shift – a OCC coordinator gave us an update on the number of boxes packed, their destination, and prayed as we laid hands on the boxes
  • You must be 13 or older to volunteer

me praying over the boxes

In 2014 there were 9 processing centers – Charlotte, Baltimore, Boone (NC), Atlanta, Dallas/Fort Worth, Minneapolis, Denver, Hawaii, and Southern California.

Volunteer registration for the OCC Processing centers usually occurs in September – check the OCC website over the summer for the exact date. I strongly suggest you get online the day registration opens to snag the date and time slot you prefer. Processing Centers are usually open from the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, through the third week in December.

our OCC group

If you are interested in learning more about volunteering with OCC please visit their Volunteer Page.

You may also want to read:
My Message in a Box
Serving in the OCC Processing Center – Part 1
Serving in the OCC Processing Center – Part 2
How to Pack a Better Shoebox
What It’s Like to Give a Child a Shoebox
How to Host an Operation Christmas Child Packing Party
How Your Women’s Ministry Can Get Involved with Operation Christmas Child


Encouragement Idea: Blessings Bags