Nov. 18 through 25 is national collection week for Operation Christmas Child, a charity that collects shoeboxes filled with donated items for children in need around the world. Cherry Ridge Baptist Church is is the drop-off site for Morehouse Parish and it is not too late to make a donation.

Cherry Ridge has about 25 volunteers helping out by packing shoeboxes and stacking and packing up donated shoeboxes in boxes to be picked up next week. Monday was their first day to collect shoeboxes and by 10 a.m., they already had over 400 shoeboxes. Prairie View Academy, Trinity and Greenacres made donations and the volunteers are expecting many more donations throughout the week especially from area churches.

Individuals can also make donations either by putting together shoeboxes themselves or by building a shoebox online at which costs $30.

Samaritan's Purse International Relief is the organization behind Operation Christmas Child. The organization's CEO is Franklin Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham. The mission of Operation Christmas Child is to demonstrate God's love in a tangible way to needy children around the world, and together with the local church worldwide, to share the Good News of Jesus Christ. Their goal this year is to collect 9.8 million shoebox gifts from the United States and nine other countries.