Members from El Morro Church in Los Osos packed 1,200 shoe box gifts with school supplies, clothing and hygiene items for children in need as part of Operation Christmas Child.
Bruce Curtis, media representative for Central Coast Operation Christmas Child, says officials expect to collect more than 13,500 shoe box gifts from the central coast between the end of September and November.
"Most of the kids who are receiving these boxes have never had a present their entire lives, and we try to give them a tangible expression of love that God cares for them," Marion Curtis, Operation Christmas Child area coordinator, said.
When added to the nationwide total, Operation Christmas Child aims to contribute more than 11 million shoe box gifts, which are set to go to more than 100 countries where famine, war and natural disasters have occurred, said Bruce Curtis.
"We're getting these boxes to go out there to the people and to spread the gospel message and spread cheer," church member Phil Dell said.
Operation Christmas Child is a project of international faith-based relief organization, Samaritan's Purse.