Members of the Joy Bible Class at First Community Church in Buckeye Lake fill shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child. The gift boxes are shipped to children all over the world. First Community Church will also will serve as a relay center for the fourth year. That means that First Community will serve as a regional collection point for the shoe box gifts. Last year First Community members filled 200 boxes with small gifts. A total of 709 shoe boxes came through the relay center. Gift shoeboxes are sought in six categories - boys: 2-4 years old, 5-9 years and 10- 14 years; and girls: 2-4, 5-9 and 10- 14. Standard shoe boxes should be covered with holiday gift wrap, then filled with small gifts such as school supplies; toys; hygiene items like tooth brushes, toothpaste, combs, socks and washclothes; and other gifts like hard candy, gum, caps, hair clips, watches and flashlights. Used or damaged items should not be included nor any war-related items like toy guns or military figures. Liquids, lotions, chocolates, food or easily breakable items should also not be included. Box lids should be not be sealed, but attached by a rubber band. Each shoe box should include a check of at least $7 to help cover shipping and project costs. Multiple boxes can be covered by one check. Checks should be payable to Samaritan's Purse. Additional cash donations are also welcome. Relay center drop-off dates and times are: • Monday through Friday, Nov. 17-21: 5 - 8 p.m. daily. • Saturday, Nov. 22: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. • Sunday, Nov. 23: 1 - 3 p.m. More information is available from Kellie Vaughn, Relay Center coordinator, at (740) 644-0150. For more information about Operation Christmas Child visit www. samaritanspurse.org. Beacon photo by Charles Prince.