Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Big Fun Box

I hinted with my Photo of the Day early this morning that I volunteered to help in The Big Fun Box project.   We mentioned the project at one of our transplant support group meetings and I thought it might be fun to do a little "bag stuffing" that would be going to kids who were hospitalized.

Little did I know that I would be moving quicker than I have in years! 

My first assignment was a sit down job, no hurry really.  We were to put 11 bug stickers into a little glassine envelope, then put that bag into a larger glassine envelope with a door hanger in it.  Fold the top over and put a sticker on it to keep it closed.

After we finished the bug project, it was on to filling little brown lunch sacks.  The sea of empty bags looked daunting.

Each bag was filled with the same items - a pack of colored pencils, a deck of playing cards with dogs on them, a pencil sharpener, a folding ruler and a stress toy.  The stress toys were either a cow, a pencil or a blue car.  Those toys were specifically chosen so that if a child needed to hold on to something when getting a procedure done, or while being given a shot, they could squeeze on it and hopefully be comforted by it.  They toy could also be played with when not in need. 

Filled bags covered over half a dozen banquet tables.  My favorite part was seeing little cow heads sticking up out of the bags. 

The Big Fun Box starts off being a red plastic box, but with the addition of bright colored stickers, put on by volunteers, it becomes a gift. 

More volunteers gathered all of the items to be placed in the boxes from the banquet tables around the room.  The first item in the box is a packet of brain games, a big pad of colored paper, a plastic stencil with circles, numbers and other shapes.  Next the door hanger bag with the bug stickers goes in and lastly, the paper sack contents are placed in the box. 

The boxes are then checked to make sure everything is included, the box is shut, bagged in a plastic sleeve to make sure it arrives unscathed and large cartons are filled ready to be mailed to their hospital destination.

I was part of the bagging process.  For a few hours I grabbed the closed boxes from the checkers, bagged them and handed them off to the guys filling cartons.  I think we filled well over a dozen cartons - hundreds of The Big Fun Box - in a short time.  When it was all done I could have collapsed.  We were all moving so fast!  It was crazy and it was crazy fun. 

You can enlarge this photo to read the text.  This is one of the stickers that is placed inside the box cover.  It explains the reason behind the gift and how it came about. 

If you get a chance, please go check out The Big Fun Box website.   I am a big fan of this project and am so grateful I got a chance to work with them and get to see how The Big Fun Box gets put together!  The volunteers that came to work this day were incredible.  THANKS VOLUNTEERS!

Have a wonderful day!


jb said...

You amaze me! I am so proud to call you my friend and have you in my life!
I want a Big Fun Box for the stress of being a grown up!
I would squeeze my moo cow al day long!!!

Karen and Gerard said...

What a fun project! It reminds me of when our Adult Bible Fellowship group at church made boxes for the Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child. I will check out that website.

Bettyann said...

What a wonderful way to share your time. I can imagine the happy children opening their fun box. I can't wait until I am well enoughto do these things and pay it forward!

Debby@Just Breathe said...

What a beautiful project and I'm so glad you went and did this. I like to put boxes together for Samaritan's Purse each year.

Lisa said...

What a great idea. So glad you could share it with us.