It happens like clockwork every year and every year I seemed to be equally surprised. The donning of the holiday season seemingly finds ways to creep up earlier and earlier in the calendar. As children make the final turn on their streets trick or treating, retail workers are cuing festive music and bustling through aisles to set up holiday displays.
For some, they relish the chance to revel in the glory of holiday bliss. For others, it is an elongated reminder of the absent loved ones who are answering the call of duty in a land far away. One of my favorite things about Grantham is our registered trademark: Serving Those Who Serve®. At Grantham, we have the privilege of having many military students enrolled in one of our 38 online degree programs! In addition to these service members, we are honored to educate military spouses while they are stationed at home and abroad. What better opportunity to share our appreciation during this season of giving than with a care package or a card?
The deadline for holiday items to be sent to organizations for distribution is quickly approaching. There are hundreds of causes that will accept and disperse gifts, packages and greetings to veterans, active military and wounded warriors. Below are a couple of reminders about postage and organizations that are still accepting donations.
Sending Holiday Packages to Deployed Troops
Founded in 2002, by a U.S. Marine spouse, Give2TheTroops is a 501(c)3, tax-exempt, non-profit organization that sends care packages and letters to our deployed and wounded military troops in combat zones. They are non-political and support all branches of the service.
Their yearly holiday drive brings Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanza to the troops by the truckload. Until December 1, they are collecting boxes containing “Seasonal Sights, Sounds and Sweets.” Items requested include: new or used holiday, romantic and comedic DVDs, photos and signed banners; small Hanukkah Menorahs, holiday music; snacks (popcorn balls, peanuts in festive cans, Life Saver Story Boxes, candy canes, chocolate Hanukkah coins, etc.) and checks payable to “Give2TheTroops, Inc.”
Click here more information and a complete list of shipping instructions.
Join the American Red Cross for Holiday Mail for Heroes
Every year, the American Red Cross facilitates one of the country’s largest card drives for military families and veteran hospitals. In addition to cards this year, they are harnessing the power of social media to broadcast holiday greetings! If you’re an Instagram, Vine or general Twitter user, you can tag photos or video messages with the hashtag #HolidayMail and they will be able to display these on their blog so service members around the world can see your cheery holiday message!
If sending a card is more your style, all holiday greetings should be addressed and mailed by December 6 to:
Holiday Mail for Heroes P.O. Box 5456 Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456
Sending packages directly to service members at Army or Fleet Post Offices
According to USPS.gov, all classes of mail addressed to FPO/APO addresses must use the nine-digit ZIP code to ensure delivery. Mail not addressed correctly will be returned to the sender as undeliverable. Express Mail Military Service (EMMS) is available from selected military post offices. If mailing to an APO/FPO address, check with your local post office to determine if this service is available. Find the military shipping dates for each type of mail, whether parcel or flat letter.
Are you looking for a top-rated military-friendly university where you can earn your degree and advance your future? Click the banner below to learn more about the options Grantham has for you!
About the author: Valerie Morrow joined the Grantham team in August 2013. As social media manager, Valerie draws upon the skills she developed as a social media consultant and ghost blogger for several high-profile sites to spread the good word about online degree programs. Valerie earned her master's degree in Mass Communication from The University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg.