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RBC — I have been sending care packages to soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan for nearly thre emonths to date. I am working through the organization www.soldiersangels.com.
I personally adopted three soldiers via the Web site, which is how I got involved. Anyone can do that. However, there are so many avenues there to help our troops through many different forums you can join. It is in these forums that I have been drawn to the personal requests that come from the soldiers themselves.
There is a chaplain forum where there are request for basic toiletries and such that these men and women keep on hand to give to soldiers when needed. They run low and ask if we can help to restock them. Some deployed soldiers are interested in helping the children they encounter every day. They asked for small toys, basic school supplies. Local churches have been asked to assist with these projects.
Recently there was a request from a day shift leader for an evacuation section at a hospital. Yes, they appreciate the snacks, macaroni and cheese and ramen noodles from home, but that was not their main request. What they were in need of were the ankle length white socks to wear with their PT uniforms and basic civilian clothes to wear on their off time — such as shorts and T-shirts.
Some requests are simple such as the one from a group of medic unit gals who had just arrived to set up at a remote area in Afghanistan and had beds but no sheets. The angel network went to work and before you knew it they had received lots of twin sets, many with cartoon characters. What better way to lay your head down in a military medic unit after a long day than to look at Dora the Explorer or Big Bird!
Many of our men and women do not have the simple things we take for granted every day (toothpaste, shaving cream, shampoo, sunscreen) and personal feminine hygiene items; (tampons, pads). They ask for powdered drink mixes to add to bottle water and healthy snacks to eat. They request CDs and DVDs for entertainment.
I have a list of the most requested items, personal and fun. Together we can make a small difference in many of their lives. I have enlisted some businesses in town to put out collection cans to help with the purchase of items to send as well as shipping of the packages, spare change adds up!
Tom Kilduff and the local VFW has recently made a generous donation as well as the Methodist church. The local VFW bar and Ann the owner are working to help these men and women. White River Convenience and Watt’s Ranch Market have provided snacks, and State Farm/Kevin Amack has provided a cash donation.