RESIDENTS have helped deliver more than 100 million shoeboxes to needy children around the world.

Since 1990, through Operation Christmas Child, Samaritan’s Purse has been providing these simple gifts to children in more than 100 countries.

More than 5,400 gift-filled shoeboxes from across Worcestershire have been exported to vulnerable children in Belarus and Bosnia.

Bob James, from Operation Christmas Child, said: “I would like to thank the volunteers at our local collection sites and all those who packed an Operation Christmas Child shoebox gift.

“We’re so grateful that despite the recession and the hardship everyone is feeling people have really gone the extra mile this year to pack shoeboxes with love and because of that we’ve been able to reach our 100 millionth shoebox.”

Simon Barrington, Samaritan’s Purse UK executive director, said: “It took us 23 years to reach our first 100 million, but the programme is still growing and each year more children around the world are receiving gift-filled shoeboxes.”

He added that residents can continue to make a difference by supporting the 2013 campaign.

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