ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Community Gift Boxes

Updated on June 19, 2012

A few years ago the church I was a member of started a Food Pantry as an outreach to our Community. The Food Pantry dispensed Emergency Food Boxes twice monthly to all people in our community in need of food who met the state income requirements. They did not have to attend our church or any church as the Food Pantry was completely separate. All we wanted to do was to help people who were hungry obtain some food.

The state governing agency contract did not allow us as a Food Pantry to “solicit” people with “religious” materials. We could not hand out anything spiritual or religious in nature to people, nor initiate spiritual conversations with them, but we could make spiritual items available to them free on tables in our foyer and if they chose to pick them up and take them then that was okay.

So, as a church outreach, apart from the Food Pantry, we decided to do something to help people’s needs in our community, not only physically, but also spiritually. I presented an idea to make available small “Gift Boxes” during the Holiday months of November and December filled with items that people may need but that are not stocked in the Food Pantry. Small, inexpensive items like toiletries, sundries, pens, notepads, etc. Non-food items that are needed, useful or perhaps just a nice treat. The “Gift Boxes” would be offered free to take from a table in our church foyer. They would not be in our Food Pantry, therefore, each box could contain something spiritual—ie: a small bible, tract, scripture verse, inspirational booklet, bookmark, etc. They would not be given to people coming to the Pantry but would be available to them as a free choice from our church.

We felt that these “Gift Boxes” were a way for us as a church to reach out spiritually to people as well as physically and so meet needs that otherwise might not be met.

As a church body, we had just learned in the book of Ephesians that “We have all benefited from the rich blessings He (Jesus) brought to us—one gracious blessing after another.” (John 1:16) So in making up the “Gift Boxes” we could.. “Do all this to spread the Good News, and in doing so we enjoy its blessings” (1 Cor. 9:23)

Our containers were empty tissue boxes. I think many of the tissue boxes today are too pretty to just throw away when they are emptied, so by using them as containers for this project they were put to a good use instead of just being thrown out, besides they were readily available containers that were free and they could easily and economically be filled with useful items that people need daily but that aren’t provided by Food Pantries or Food Stamps, ie: toothpaste, soap, shampoo, deodorant, socks, comb, brush, etc. or just fun things, like candy, gum, pencils, glue, playing cards, etc. Some boxes were specifically labeled for a man, woman, child, baby, depending on the items they contained. Some were just left un-labeled and contained items that would be suitable to anyone.

We had two rules:

  1. All items had to be of a size that was able to fit into the tissue box. When we went shopping we took along an empty tissue box to fill as we shopped just to be sure everything fit.
  2. Since this was a church outreach, every box had to contain at least one spiritual item, because the purpose was not only to meet people’s physical needs but to also meet their spiritual needs.

We decorated the outsides of the boxes individually or sometimes we just brought them to church and let the children decorate them as an activity.

Our first group of boxes was set out just before Thanksgiving and the next group just before Christmas.

The outreach went very well. People readily took them and they were so appreciative.

If you are interested in doing this type of outreach as a church or youth group activity, I would encourage you to start saving empty tissue boxes now to begin getting ready for this Thanksgiving and Christmas. It is a fun and rewarding project that blesses the givers as well as the receivers. If your church doesn’t have a Food Pantry perhaps you could partner with one that does.

Community Gift Box Photo Examples


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)