2015 Christmas Care Packages
We have the opportunity to send care packages to our students!
Please read through this information entirely before you begin packing. We have limited space available, as a family will be carrying these packages over in their luggage, and we want to make these care packages as big of a blessing as possible for the students and their families!
Before packing your care package, please read the following.
Step One: Be aware that your care package must be securely packed in one gallon-size Ziploc bag, marked with your name and your student’s name. The entire package must weigh two pounds or less.
Step Two: Please take a moment to pray for your student and his or her family. Consider their great need. For our children who do have family members, those adults usually earn $1-$2 per day. The older children are begging on the streets when they are not in school and may only earn a few cents a day. You are welcome to put cash (crisp US dollars; no checks) in your care package. This would be the greatest blessing you could give them. This money will be handed DIRECTLY to your student or their family; it will not go through the organization in any way. This will be the way that you can make the greatest impact.
Step Three: Please include a photo of your family and a letter, note, or card. These students LOVE to see who their sponsors are. Just like seeing their faces makes them real to you, seeing your face makes YOU real to them. You are welcome to write to your family. An LTE staff member will gladly read and translate your message for you.
Step Four: Packing STUFF. This is the fun part! We all want to send them as much as we can, but remember, you can only send ONE gallon-size ziploc bag, and it CAN NOT weigh more than two pounds. This is the best article I have ever read on giving practical items to children in third-world countries. You are welcome to read it here:
If you don’t have time to read the article, here are the highlights modified to fit our situation:
For any age boy, what they really want is a soccer ball. So, get the best quality mini soccer ball that you can fit into the bag when it is inflated (or send a deflated ball with a pump), and you can basically forget about anything else! :)
Brand new nice short-sleeved shirts (with no writing on them) for boys and girls. Our kids have few clothes and often wear old, ripped, hand-me-downs, so nice new shirts are really appreciated and will probably fit. Keep in mind that your student is probably smaller than the average American child of the same age.
Small flashlight with batteries (Most families don’t have electricity, so a working flashlight is gold!)
Good quality melamine plate, bowl, and/or cup (Practical and also special.)
Soap AND a plastic soap dish that has a cover. When you bathe standing on a big rock in the dirt as kids do here, you really need the soap holder. And families never have enough soap.
Toothbrush in a toothbrush holder. Again, the plastic case for the toothbrush is really great when you don’t have a sink/counter/tiled bathroom, but rather brush your teeth outside squatting over dirt and need to keep it in your room.
Pencils, erasers, colored pencils, and sharpeners for all school-aged kids. And good quality pens for kids aged 10-14, in black, red, green, and blue. All of these are required for school, and the ones from America last so much longer than the cheap ones available there.
Hard candy and gum
Hair elastics or head bands for girls
A simple watch for older kids
A solar calculator for older kids
Sunglasses for older kids
For the youngest girls, a baby doll with brown skin.
Toy car, truck or airplane for the youngest boys (The ones with bigger wheels that are made for toddlers and are larger than Matchbox size are good. Matchbox wheels are so small, they don’t work well in dirt.)
NOT AS GOOD GIFTS:
Anything with instructions in English, even if it seems simple to you.
Any toy that is not universally recognizable. (Most American card and board games aren’t going to make any sense to an Ethiopian child, although we have seen children playing checkers.)
Yo-yo’s (They don’t know what it is there.)
Gloves, winter hats (the next 6 - 8 months will be warm and dry in Ethiopia.)
Play-dough (Kids there have no idea what it is for.)
Stickers or temporary tattoos (Kids don’t have anywhere to stick the stickers, and often the pictures don’t make sense or connect with their world.)
T-shirts with words or pictures on them (Would you want to wear a shirt with something unknown written on it? And again, pictures have different meanings in different cultures. Stick with solid colors, stripes, or pretty designs.)
Anything cheap or fragile
I really believe if we go through the process in this order and stick to these guidelines, we’ll be able to bless these kids and their families in a BIG way!! :D
If you live outside of Greene County, Indiana you can mail your care package to Brandy Wade 760 D Street NE Linton, Indiana 47441. If you live locally, you can drop your care package off at the drop-off boxes at either Correll’s LP Gas or True Care Chiropractic, both located on the west side of Linton.
All care packages need to arrive by Monday, December 7th.