Thursday, July 20, 2006

Service Suggestions DAY FOUR

I'm sorry this post is so late tonight. We didn't have internet access at the Chapel all day today and I just got home from the Purpose Evening Class. Happily, I did this entry yesterday and just needed to finish it up and post it. Enjoy!

Today's Topic: Encouraging Those who Serve in the Military

Today's suggestions are going to feature options with a great organization called "Adopt a Platoon." They have many programs that allow you to encourage a service member in a way that works for your schedule. Visit their website for more detailed information

For Those with Limited Time: Sign up to adopt a soldier for pen pal support. They ask you send one card a week which really isn't all that much. You send them some information and they will send you the name and mailing address of a soldier deployed to Afghanistan or Iraq. You can pick up a greeting card at the grocery story and put a personal message on the inside. Here's a tip to make it super easy - purchase a package of address labels that can be used in your inkjet printer. Type the address in the template in Microsoft Word and print out two or three sheets of the soldiers address. Purchase a months worth of cards at one time and a sheet of postage stamps and put the cards, labels and postage in a folder or large envelope. Keep the folder handy by storing it in your dayplanner, office desk, or where you sit down to pay bills. When you have an extra moment - such as sitting in rush hour traffic, waiting at the dentist office or standing in line at the grocery store - just pull out your card, write a few personal notes, stamp, address it and seal it up! You can sign up for this on the website.

For Those with Children at Home: You can sign up to adopt a soldier. This is different from pen pal support in that you add to card/letter duties a care package once a month. Children can have great fun with this. There are lists on their website that give you some ideas of what to send. Have the kids help you choose the items. Another great idea is to have the kids do chores around the house to earn some money to buy something to put into the box. The boxes have to be sent priority mail and you can get free priority mail supplies delivered to your house at no charge by ordering them from the post office website. One helpful thing you can order from this site is a flat-rate priority mail box as shown here. This box costs $8.10 and you pay for it upfront when you order it from the website. Then you fill the box and drop it off at the nearest post office. The postage is already prepaid. Or, for the really timed crunch, you can call and arrange for home pickup. The details about that are on the link where the box is shown.
Including pictures, handwritten letter or stories and handmade crafts from your children is a fun way for them to participate and a welcome gift from those serving far from family and friends. You can sign up to adopt a soldier on the website.

For Those with More Time: You can organize donations for one of Adopt A Platoon's campaigns. They have numerous donation campaigns such as Operation Crayon or Operation Underwear. These campaigns are ways for you to gather supplies from others such as friend at church, the office or your neighborhood and mail them to a chaplain serving with a deployed troop. The Chaplin will distribute the supplies to the soldiers. You can includes notes with each donation. This requires the time to find people willing to donate, collect the donations and oversee mailing them to the Chaplain.

I will have copies of the latest campaigns, suggested items to send in care packages, and more details on how to sign up with me in Sunday School on Sunday if you'd like to participate. This is one organization I have a lot of respect for and have been working with them for almost six years now. Feel free to ask away if you have any questions.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very pretty site! Keep working. thnx!

8:15 AM  

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