The best advice I give to people that want to send things to servicememebers is first, stay within a budget. The last thing we want is you to be between a rock and a hard spot, especially now.
Send when you can and send the items that matter the most. That brings me to probably the ,most important meat of this, “What are really important items to send”?
The below are items I have found to be most beneficial:
-Wetwipes (have you ever used toilet paper that has sat on the port a john floor? OR been without TP?)
Body soap (when we do get showers-for all that is holy use liquid soap)
Lotion (it’s a hasrsh environment-give your skin some love)
Neosporin (cuts are continuous-need to treat as soon as you get em-lots of nasty germs there)
AA Batteries (ONE Million uses)
Nail clippers (It’s the basic things that make you happy)
1” Small paint brushes (to brush flour like dirt off of weapons)
Coffee & coffee filters (need more coffee) AND you can go to any Starbucks, buy the stuff & they will donate to the cause!
Shaving cream (do you see any of the news pics? It’s not like Iraq, there are no stores in the crappy areas or really at all)
Razors i.e. Mach 3 & razor blades (disposable razors are bad)
Electric Razors are the bomb because, you don’t need blades and they can be recharged without batteries AND you don’t have to use water when its 32 degrees. Here are some good ones:
Peak 1 squad stoves to heat water (hello coffee)
Adaptors to make British (big three pronged ones) plugs turn into US plugs
Chef B Or Dee in a can (MREs get old after the 1st one & are hell on your gut)
"Foam in a can" stuff to plug any water leaks in our makeshift roof
Hand warmer things (lets face it, its gonna be freezing pretty much all the time)
These are a few items that will give us the biggest bang for the buck vis sending this and that. I can tell you from receiving all kinds of things, its better you know WHAT we really need instead of sending things that may seem good to have vis need to have.
Lets face it you are busy. You have a million things going on, the kids are got to get here & there, the dog is chewing your shoe, the grass needs to be cut again before winter and I could go on & on here. I get it. If you don’t have toime to do all the support package stuff, send cash to organizations like www.anysoldier.com They can send us things that we need and have in the last few of my deployments. They sent my unit 150 electirc razors in Iraq. Man, that was HUGE as we spread loaded them to all the units. The guys really enjoyed them and were blown away by the support. So if you don’t have the time to get a package together, send the resources to the guys that can make it happen for you at www.anysoldier.com. Check out some of their work here: http://anysoldier.com/NoteToSupporters.cfm
This is a great site that helps you get the stuff to your warriors. Thanks for thinking of us and sending some items that will make life a bit more comfortable.