Kids + Love. These are two parts of Ev’s DNA that you wouldn’t miss if you knew her. So when the idea came up of filling boxes of goods for children in need, we hopped right to it. We partnered with Samaritan’s Purse, a charity that runs an annual drive they call “Operation Christmas Child”. They’ve delivered more than 100 million boxes worldwide to children in need since the drive began in the early 90’s. So the next question was, if we bring Ev’s fam and friends together to fill some boxes, how many? 25? Would 50 be too much? Let’s be ambitious and try 75? We decided to aim for 50, but order 75 total for some extras and “just in case”.
The afternoon of the event, doors were opened at Ben’s parent’s place with the instructions, “please bring some things to fill the boxes and $7 each to cover deliver the delivery of each box”. Not only did the house quickly fill with warm bodies and bags and bags of goods, each person also brought with them a spirit of giving and collaboration to work alongside people they had never met. Before we knew it, the floor was covered with colourful toys, stationary, toothbrushes, and other curiosities that would prompt you to pick up and fiddle with as if you yourself were a child. Family and friends automatically assembled themselves in various groups without being given any direction, finding their niche quickly, whether it was wrapping paper group: engineering the optimal way of wrapping the box using the least amount of paper, or the supply chain management group: examining the inventory and flow of how to fill the boxes, the house was humming with excitement of bodies and minds working together. Within a few hours, all boxes were assembled, filled, closed, stacked, individual notes written to each child. Number of boxes filled? 76, including boxes that would be dropped off later by those who couldn’t join us that day. We ordered 75 boxes, but how did we end up with 76? Funny thing, we stumbled upon a shoebox that Ev had wrapped years before, to store her craft supplies. It was the perfect size and shape to fill and add to the collection, and so we did. A few weeks later, as the back trunk of our suv was filled for the delivery, one by one, Ev’s pink shoe box with pink and white stripes completed the collection.
A big thank you to every single one of you who participated, whether you were at the event or participated in any other way. Your love and warmth was felt through us, and then through a happy child who received a box.
Check out the short video that was put together of the day. Sorry that it’s quite late, but hopefully it will give you a flashback or glimpse of the chaos of the day we boxed up some love in a way that would be ‘Ev approved’ :)
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