Friday, June 04, 2004

Oh, crap. My selfishness just went out the window.

So, I just found Books For Soldiers, via Wil Wheaton. It is an amazing organization that coordinates people who want to help our troops (that's you and me) with troops in need of books, movies, et cetera. All you need is money for postage (within the US - packages go to US bases and are shipped to the soldiers) and books, magazines, or whatever that are just cluttering up your home. Letters and postcards are also most welcome. Some of the soldiers make specific requests for favorites, but most of them just want anything to pass the time. Some of the requests are for practical items - one soldier from the National Guard wrote that her unit was low on supplies because the "real" soldiers are higher priority, and she desperately needed batteries (for flashlights, gutter-brains). Another asked for candy to give the Iraqi children. There were a LOT of requests for sunscreen, bug spray and snacks. A man from a K-9 unit asked for dog booties to protect his dogs' feet in the desert.

As I learned last fall, packages to "Any Soldier" are no longer accepted for security reasons. This is a terrific work-around if you do not personally know deployed soldiers. (By the way, while "Soldier" only refers to the Army, this website serves all military branches.)

I've put a permanent button link in the sidebar. It is currently below my birthday countdown, because anything you send to the troops is as good as two presents for me. (But I have not completely lost my mind. I still like presents.)