The Christmas Box International provides assistance to prevent child abuse and services to improve the quality of life for children who have been abused, neglected or abandoned.

Our motto is simple: every child deserves a childhood.

In 1996, founder and New York Times best-selling author Richard Paul Evans created a safe place for Utah's children, a Christmas Box House, naming the charity after his first novel, The Christmas Box.

We asked the question, ‘What is the most important thing we can do for at-risk children?’ The answer to that was The Christmas Box House.
— Richard Paul Evans, Founder and Board President

The Christmas Box Houses, also known as "emergency children's shelters," were built in three Utah cities: Salt Lake City, Ogden and Moab. The Christmas Box Houses offer shelter and food, as well as on-site therapy, medical and dental evaluations, and recreational activities.

Since the beginning, our mission has been to serve children who are victims of abuse, neglect and abandonment, but over the years we have grown and improved upon that original vision of our founder. In 2013, we served 6,491 children and teens through our programs.

At any given time, there are roughly 2,800 children in foster care throughout Utah. In probably every neighborhood, every school, there will be a child who has experienced abuse, neglect or abandonment.
— Lisa McDonald, Executive Director

In 2013, we served 6,491 children and teens who were victims of abuse, neglect and abandonment. Annually more than 6,000 children are served locally, nationally, and internationally through our programs.

Since completing construction of our emergency children's shelters, we continue to grow our programs. From providing a Christmas morning to pairing mentors with teens aging out of foster care, our programs aim to serve the same youth that inspired the first Christmas Box House. 


Our Programs

The Christmas Box Houses

The Mentor Project

Christmas Box Resource Rooms

The Lifestart Initiative

Project Elf

International Projects