It is a warm, moving story! Mariya Snizhko of Ukraine at age 10, with her five siblings, received their Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes of love gifts. Their mother had been to Kiev for medical treatment and, while there, volunteered with Samaritans Purse in assembling and preparing shoeboxes for children in need. The workers there, learning that she had six children four hours away, insisted that she take three shoeboxes of gifts upon her trip home. She returned to the family’s apartment for the six of them, one room with one bathroom for the eight of them!
Other than candy, Mariya had never before received a Christmas gift. Her dedicated Christian parents provided love and security, but had very little income. Mariya tells of the added joy upon finding things in the shoeboxes that helped develop her artistic talents.
With her family now having moved to the USA, she is a spokesperson for Samaritans Purse’s Operation Christmas Child (www.samaritanspurse.org). Since the OCC effort began in the 1990’s, more than 130,000,000 shoeboxes have been provided to the poor children of the world!
Her artwork can be seen at her website: www.snizhkofineart.com.
Would you be a part of this great work?
Midwestern OCC shoeboxes leaders – Joe Christian and Scott Luhring were in the studio with Mariya with helpful insights for this radio conversation. They explain ways for all of us to become involved in the joyful work of Operation Christmas Child.
St Louis area Coordinator, Vicki Stamps, can be contacted at (314) 363-1150.
Earlier radio with related stories – and the links to access them for anytime listening – are featured below:
“Alex of Rwanda saw family murdered; in orphanage given OCC shoebox, received Jesus, forgave killer” — http://haroldhendrick.com/content/view/469/5/;
“Valery Bianco, a Russian child in an orphanage received an impacting OCC shoebox of gifts…and love!” — http://haroldhendrick.com/content/view/461/5/;
“Karen Banegas at 10, given OCC shoebox in Honduras; Vicki Stamps invites more volunteers to OCC joy” — http://haroldhendrick.com/content/view/571/5/;
“Romanian Andy Bollinger & Russian Elena Hagemeir; received a Christmas shoebox; changed them forever” — http://haroldhendrick.com/content/view/246/5/;
“Russian twins Zoya, Denis joyfully received Christmas shoeboxes in orphanage; lives changed” — http://haroldhendrick.com/content/view/346/5;
“Vicki Stamps: 124+ million shoeboxes of love gifts to poor kids! Collection days before Thanksgiving” — http://haroldhendrick.com/content/view/705/5/ — (by 2016, 135+ million shoeboxes distributed!);
“Appalachia’s Mary Damron loves poor children; voice of Franklin Graham’s Operation Christmas Child” — http://haroldhendrick.com/content/view/198/5/;
“Joe Christian re joys of sharing OCC shoeboxes of love gifts and Jesus to poor children worldwide” — http://haroldhendrick.com/content/view/595/5/; and …
“Alex of Rwanda survived war, received OCC shoebox, visits St. Louis w/ message of love & forgiveness” — http://haroldhendrick.com/content/view/763/.