Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Get those donations ready

The holidays are just around the corner, and we all know the crunch to get gifts purchased and wrapped, and possibly even mailed on time.

But getting things donated to our soliders serving overseas needs to happen even sooner.

Here in PA there is a great organization called Keystone Soliders. I do my best to donate to them year round, but I make an extra push for additional donations at this time of year. Their current wish list for donations is:

*** 12" to 15" CHRISTMAS STOCKINGS for the holidays*** Can be home made or store bought!
*Cold drink mixes – Gatorade, Crystal Lite, Kool Aid or the individual flavor straws you add to bottled water
Ground Coffee (not instant), tea, hot chocolate or spiced cider. Coffee creamer and sugar packets too!
*Power Bars, cereal bars, trail mix and healthy snacks
Ramen Noodle packs (the big cups are hard to pack and limit what we can fit in the packages)
*Slim Jims, *Beef or Turkey Jerky Granola Bars
Sunflower Seeds & Nuts
***Individual snacks like chips, crackers, cookies, cheese/cracker kits
*Peanut Butter & Jelly – small size plastic jars please

Microwave popcorn
Small sewing kits and manicure kits
*Sunscreen and insect repellent, Chap Stick with sunscreen, Carmex, Blistex
**Body wash mens and ladies
Shampoo - mens and ladies
*Foot Powder and foot cream for athlete's foot
Odor Eaters (for boots), Dr. Scholl's foot pads, blister pads
Hand Sanitizer - small size bottles to carry with them
Shave cream – non-aerosol only and good razors
Hand and foot warmers
Mens and Ladies underwear in sizes Small, Med, Large
Ladies calf high socks or boot socks
New or used game systems like PS2 or Xbox
Video games for the systems above or small hand-held games
**CDs and DVDs - New or used are fine. Current releases are appreciated
*AT&T Global Pre-Paid Calling Cards (available at Sam’s Club or www.aafes.com)
Money for shipping costs. Please, please! They need to raise at least $15,000 to ship the stockings and holiday cards!

* = Items most needed or requested by the troops! ***They are currently OUT of STOCK on cookies, fruit snacks, chips, and crackers. We still need jerky, slim jims and body wash.
You can print this list to share with others or take shopping with you by clicking the link at the top of the article! You are welcome to print as many copies as you like so please pass them on to others who are interested in supporting our troops.
Please do not send any more cans of vegetables or outdated food items. They cost a lot to throw away. We do NOT need any more books right now. Please consider sending underwear or DVDs instead.
****Monetary donations are needed to help ship the care packages. This is always the biggest need by far. Shipping costs have increased and they really need to be able to get the packages out every week. They ship Wednesday and Saturday and are currently sending 50 to 200 boxes every week. The troops are counting on us.

Keystone Soldiers is gearing up for our annual Stockings for Soldiers campaign for the holidays. This will be our 6th Christmas season sending holiday cheer from home to those serving our country all over the world. One of our big needs is the Christmas stockings so that we have enough to cover the 6,000 or so troops on our list that have already signed up. Please help us make sure that none of our troops goes without a holiday smile from home this year.
If you have a church group or scout troop or even a sewing club that could help us out with some 12" to 15" stockings it would be a huge blessing. They can be home-made, sewn from felt or purchased. We have had to buy some extras the last couple years and the Dollar Tree stores usually have a great selection for only $1 each. We currently have a couple hundred in stock thanks to the Lynn family and several other donors who have drooped off bags of them at our Leesport packing location. We appreciate all of you who have remembered that we have to start early to make sure the stockings get there in plenty of time. Registered users can view some of the photos of those who received stockings from us last year in the Media Gallery!

Our other BIG need for this campaign will be the money to ship the stockings. The economic situation has hit us hard the last few months. I know that times are tough and that when you are struggling to put gas in your car and food on the table that one of the items that is not on your mind is giving money away. All I can ask is if you can help us with $5.00 or a package of snacks or socks or other items from the list to put in the stockings you do so. We truly appreciate any help at all and no donation is too big or too small.

We will be posting more details on Stockings for Soldiers and some extra packing dates and times over the next few weeks. We hope to see lots of our old friends during the holday season!
Thanks for your continued support for Keystone Soldiers and for our troops!

No comments: