Monday, December 28, 2009

Operation: Touch of Home

In preparation for their son’s deployment to Fallujah, Iraq, a couple started Operation: Touch of Home in 2004 as a way for friends and family to reach out to their loved ones stationed overseas. They discovered the tremendous impact receiving essential and comfort items from home had on the soldiers’ morale.

Since 2004, this Pennsylvania-based, non-profit, completely volunteer organization has grown. This effort so far has touched the lives of 600 heroes and shipped over 80,000 pounds of items over the last six years. These individuals share these items with their whole unit so literally thousands have benefited.

In 2007, a government snafu delayed 45 servicemen returning from Afghanistan in Fort Bragg, NC. Operation: Touch of Home assisted these 45 servicemen so they could be with their families on Christmas.

This Holiday season, my company participated in a drive to collect items for our military troops through this organization. Boxes were set up in each department and we brought in a variety of items. I heard someone say, “Doesn’t the government supply the soldiers with this stuff?” And a coworker of mine whose son is stationed in Iraq, Special Forces, argued, “Probably some items, but the soldiers love getting packages from home. You have no idea how much it means to them.”

Some of the items requested on the list include: Instant coffee, protein powders, packaged candy, cookies, gum, protein bars, snacks, Soup to Go, crossword puzzles, Frisbees, Fitness magazines, new DVD movies, socks (no white), sunscreen, After Bite, lip balm, deodorant, pocket pack tissues, Tylenol packets, cough drops, cold medicines, washcloths, towels, etc.

This year 13,698 pounds of items packed in 596 boxes were shipped to our heroes. This is a Pennsylvania organization. I’m sure there are others like it if you check around in your area.

Happy New Year!!

Also can be viewed at 12/30/09


Titania Ladley said...

Wow, 13,698 pounds! That's a lot of love and support. What a wonderful way to say, "Thanks for your sacrifices." I'm definitely bookmarking the site, Kathy. Great post.

BTW, Happy New Year!


Kathy Kulig said...

Thanks so much Titania. The photo of the soldier with the letter really tugged at my heart. Happy New Year to you too!