Local teen helps deliver shoebox gifts in Mongolia

On August 5, Kylie Wells of Cedar Springs will share photographs (such as this) and stories of her trip to Mongolia.

Most people cannot point to Mongolia on a map. But 16-year-old Cedar Springs resident Kylie Wells cannot only do that, but can even pronounce its capital city of Ulaan Baatar.

Wells has just returned from the Mongolian capital and surrounding villages to learn about the impact Operation Christmas Child is having on children in developing countries. Wells and 19 others were chosen as “Samaritan’s Purse Youth” for the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hand-deliver shoebox gifts filled with toys, hygiene items and school supplies to Mongolian children suffering from poverty.

In 2012, Operation Christmas Child expects to reach a milestone—collecting and delivering shoeboxes to more than 100 million children since 1993. During that time, Operation Christmas Child has collected more than 94 million shoebox gifts and hand-delivered them to suffering children in more than 130 countries. Mongolia began receiving shoebox gifts in 1996; since then, more than 250,000 Mongolian children ages 2-14 have received a gift.

Wells will be sharing pictures and stories of her trip to Mongolia on Sunday, August 5 at 6 p.m. at Crossroads Church in Rockford. The public is invited to attend and hear how they can get involved by packing a shoebox for this year’s collection week, which is November 12-19.

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