This is a weekend for remembering fallen soldiers, but beyond remembering them, there isn't a whole lot we can do. They're gone. We can't bring them back. So I thought I'd focus on what we can do. We can take care of the troops who are still with us, either still serving or retired. We can help their families cope with their absence. We can make a difference. So, as we remember the fallen, let us also remember the living.
I dug up a few charities that make a huge impact in small ways because sometimes those little things make the biggest difference.
General donations/care packages:
Operation USO Care Package sends care packages to service men and women all over the world. Your $25 donation pays for the items that go into the package.
Operation Gratitude sends care packages to troops overseas. A $15 donation pays for shipping.
Operation Shoebox sends care packages, but accepts donations of products that are sent to them. If you'd rather send items than a monetary donation, this is the one for you.
|helmet liner without helmet courtesy|
of Packages from Home website
Warmth for Warriors sends hats and washcloths to active and retired troops. Simple hat patterns and further details are available on their site.
Soldiers' Angels - Blankets of Gratitude group sends knitted, crocheted, and hand-loomed blankets to veterans. (The open work of these items prevents them from being useful in a hospital setting.) Poke around their site for other types of blankets they send to active duty and wounded soldiers.
Packages from home uses hand knitted helmet liners in their care packages. Very specific instructions and a pattern are shown on their site.
How you can earn a free pattern:
If you decide to donate handmade items and would like to use one of my washcloth or hat patterns, leave a comment below with the pattern you intend to use. If you pledge to make two hats or three washcloths from the pattern of your choice, I will send you the pattern free of charge.
However, I want to see pictures! Perhaps I'll post them on Veteran's Day.