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Lady Grizzlies Basketball Volunteers at Operation Christmas Child

The girls basketball team pose for a picture with their shoeboxes. They packaged over two hundred boxes in two hours. Photo Courtesy of Kristel Stone.
The girls basketball team pose for a picture with their shoeboxes. They packaged over two hundred boxes in two hours. Photo Courtesy of Kristel Stone.
The girls at the ball inflation station blow up Sofia the First balls. This was one of the competitions that the girls were competing in. Photo courtesy of Kristel Stone.

The Wadsworth girls basketball team visited Stones’ Farm to volunteer for Operation Christmas Child on Saturday, October 21.

Operation Christmas Child is an organization carried on by Matt and Kristel Stone, a couple that lives in Wadsworth. The way that Operation Christmas Child works is people from all around the community gather at the Stones’ barn to stuff shoeboxes full of toys, school supplies, clothing, hygiene necessities, and letters. Once packaged, these shoe boxes are sent to countries all around the world and are given to children in need.

The girl’s basketball team stuffed over 200 boxes in the two hours that they volunteered on Saturday morning. The day started by splitting up the team into four groups that would compete at each of the stations. The stations consisted of a coloring station, box folding station, ball inflating station, and finally, the shoebox stuffing station. 

The coloring station consisted of coloring pages and postcards, the box folding station had green and red shoeboxes that needed to be folded and labeled, the ball station consisted of blowing up hundreds of Sofia the First balls, and the shoebox stuffing station consisted of stuffing each shoebox with toys, school supplies, and necessities like toothbrushes and soap.

The basketball team had to count how many tasks they got done at each station and competed for a Panera gift card. Jessie Crookton, senior group leader, led her group to victory at all the stations. 

“My favorite part of the morning was competing with my team at each station,” said Crookston. “It made it more fun and exciting.”

The green and red shoe boxes were used for Operation Christmas Child. The girl’s basketball team folded and labeled these to prepare them for stuffing. Photo Courtesy of Kristel Stone.

Daniella Ripplinger, a freshman, helped the team out throughout the morning as she was super familiar with Operation Christmas Child because she has been volunteering since she was seven years old.

“Operation Christmas Child is so important to me because I love sharing joy with others and telling them about God,” said Ripplinger. “Being kind and having compassion for others creates a better world.”

Kristel Stone, who organized the morning for the Grizzlies, ended the experience by praying over all of the boxes and children that the boxes would go to. She expressed that Operation Christmas Child is expanding, and she could not be more thankful.

“With this year’s estimate, we will have sent over 20,000 boxes,” said Stone. “None of this is possible without the support from the Wadsworth community and our friends and family.”

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About the Contributor
Brooke Baughman
Brooke Baughman, Opinion Editor
Brooke Baughman is a senior and has been on the Bruin staff for two years. She is the Opinion Editor and loves to write sports stories. She is the beat writer for the WHS volleyball, girls' soccer, and boys' basketball teams. Outside of Bruin, Brooke is a varsity basketball player and is involved in numerous clubs at WHS, including being a peer mentor for the freshman class and teaching 3rd graders about the dangerous effects of peer pressure through a group called HUDDLE. Brooke enjoys spending time with her three dogs, Charlie, Baker, and Dallas, and her grandparents. Brooke plans to attend college and major in a Pre-Physician Assistant program.
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