Operation Gratitude

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Troops to Troops: Gifts of Caring for Our Military

To Girl Scout and Brownie Troops Across the U.S.A.:

We are grateful for the Girl Scout and Brownie troops that help us send Girl Scout cookies to our courageous deployed troops. We enjoy working with the Girl Scouts during their Cookie Pre-Sales and Booth Sales to ensure that we can include one or two boxes of Girl Scout cookies in each of the 100,000+ Care Packages we send out during our Patriotic Drive in the Spring and our Holiday Drive in the Fall-Winter.

To increase your sales, and bring smiles to the service members deployed overseas, you can suggest that buyers purchase extra boxes to be donated to the troops. Once you have collected all the donated boxes, please deliver or ship them to Operation Gratitude and we will take care of sending them overseas in our individually addressed care packages.

In the past, our recipients have enjoyed the personal notes that the Girl Scouts (or the donors) have attached to the boxes (2″x 4″ mailing labels work best), and we encourage you to do that again. Please be sure the notes are visible for screening, are addressed generically (Dear Brave One, Dear Hero, etc.), and are upbeat and positive. Please see our Letter Writing flyer for more information: LETTER WRITING

Upon a donor’s request, we will provide an Operation Gratitude acknowledgment for an individual donation of 50 boxes or more. If donors request a receipt from Operation Gratitude, we recommend that you have a triplicate receipt book–give one copy to the customer; keep one copy for your records and send the third copy to us so that we can send an acknowledgment to the buyer. Please be sure to include the donor’s name and full mailing address on the receipt. Please mail the receipts (but NOT the cookies) to:

Operation Gratitude
21100 Lassen Street
Chatsworth, CA 91311

While we know that Thin Mints and Peanut Butter Patties are extremely popular, we respectfully request that you do not send us those varieties, as we cannot send chocolate products to the desert during the summer. The Caramel Delites (or their equivalent) are fine.

NOTE: If your Girl Scout Council is working directly with Operation Gratitude, please check with your Gift of Caring representative for any special information pertaining to your regional program.

You might also want to reference our10 Ways to Helpflyer and ourTroops to Troopsflyer, too. If you modify the flyers in any way, please email them to us first for approval before making copies — [email protected]. We can also provide black and white versions of the flyers and additional photos of troops with their Girl Scout cookies.

Please plan to deliver or ship the cookies between March 12 and May 21 for the Patriotic Drive and September 15 and December 5 for the Holiday Drive. Please ship cookies to:

Operation Gratitude/California Army National Guard
21100 Lassen Street
Chatsworth, CA 91311
ATTN: Girl Scout Cookies
Phone: 818.469.0448

Depending on the number of boxes ordered, your cookie supplier may be willing to ship directly to us. Please contact them for details. For large orders to be delivered by freight, please have the shipper contact Rich Hernandez for delivery arrangements.

Find helpful shipping tips, cost-saving ideas and important information here: SHIPPING & DONATION INFO.

For in-person delivery, we will accept donations at the armory during our Volunteer Hours of Operation.

Please print and fill out our Donation Form and send it with your cookies so we can mail a letter of acknowledgment and appreciation to your troop. If you want confirmation of delivery on your shipments of item donations prior to receipt of our acknowledgment letter, please use the tracking system provided by your shipper.

For those Girl Scout troops located in the Southern California region, we welcome volunteers ages 12 and up to participate in the assembling of packages at our facility. If your troop is interested in participating, please email us at: [email protected] and be sure to include “Operation Gratitude” in the subject line. The Volunteer schedule and general information can be found here: http://www.operationgratitude.com/volunteer/volunteer-info-schedule/

We are very appreciative of all your efforts on behalf of our brave U.S. Military Service members. As you can see, we need a LOT of boxes of Girl Scout cookies to meet our goal of one or two boxes in each of the 100,000+ Operation Gratitude packages per year. Please pass our information on to all your Girl Scout contacts and encourage them to work with us as well!

THANK YOU for your support!

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Mail Call: Do the Troops Really Say That?

Do you ever take time to visit the Operation Gratitude website and read the troop letters and emails we post in our Mail Call section? When you do, you’ll find heartfelt and emotional letters like this one — explaining that our packages provide much more than just fun and delicious items…they provide peace of mind:

Dear Operation Gratitude,

Four days ago a lot of the Marines here in my platoon got your packages. We get a lot of packages from different organizations but these have been given an honor only bestowed by Infantry Marines. When one of us receives a package another Marine will usually say:

Is that an Operation Gratitude one? Those are bad**s.” 

It’s not much, but from a grunt there is no higher praise for something.

To me these packages mean much more because I was once a volunteer at this organization. I would walk the lines with packages and stack them on the pallets.

Now being on the receiving end it’s not only the gifts that mean something to me. Every once in a while we get the chance to use the internet and go on Facebook. When I went on, I saw my family packing packages with all of my friends and extended family. Life is hard enough over here for all of us because we’ve lost some good friends. Some of those friends made the ultimate sacrifice and it has hit us all very hard in the past month. On top of this, thinking about your parents and wondering how they’re doing never helps but sometimes you can’t help go there.

When I saw my family surrounded by smiling Operation Gratitude volunteers helping pack a special package for me, I felt as if a weight was lifted off my chest.

To me, Operation Gratitude is more than just packages but it’s also hope. Hope for the people we leave back home who worry about us. The people who are left in the dark while we’re out here and the people who are always on our minds. It gives them a way to communicate to us and say that they’re still here for us. To me that just holds so much more than the other packages I get. For that I thank you.

Thank you Operation Gratitude for what you have done not only for us, but what you have done for everyone who has family and friends in harm’s way.

From, T.M., USMC

Once again, the troops say it best: THANK YOU to all who help Operation Gratitude bring hope and encouragement to our Heroes serving in harm’s way and to their loved ones at home.

Remember: Every donation of $15 pays the shipping and assembly costs to send another care package. Please consider setting up a “Recurring Donation” so you will know you are  providing hope to our Military all year long: Donate Now.  In the “Donation Information” section, click on “Recurring” as the donation type and then select the frequency (eg. once a month).

Now, you can send one or more care packages every month of the year — providing that “peace of mind” and certain smiles to heroes like T.M. and his comrades.  Donate Now

Thank you for your support!

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Volunteer Schedule: January – June 2012

Winter Schedule: Jan. 3 — Feb. 29, 2012

Weekday Hours:
Mondays & Fridays: 9-4
Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays: 12-4

CLOSED:
Mon., January 16 (Martin Luther King Jr. Day)
Mon., February 20 (Presidents’ Day)

Special Fridays:
 Jan. 20 and Feb. 24 — Labeling
All other Fridays: Battalion Buddy Prep/Assembly

Patriotic Drive Schedule: March 1 — June 30,2012

Product Deliveries / Donation Drop-Offs:
March 12 — May 21 during our listed hours of operation only.

Weekday Hours:
Mondays & Fridays: 9-4
Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays: 12-4

CLOSED:
Fri., April 6 (Good Friday)
Mon., May 28 (Memorial Day)

Special Friday: March 30 — Labeling if needed  

Weekend Dates & Hours (All Assembly Days 9-4; All Prep Days 9-12):
Sun. March 4         Prep 9-12
Sat. March 24        Prep 9-12
Fri. March 30        Labeling if needed
Sun. April 15          Down & Dirty Mud Run-Lake Castaic
Sat. April 21           Prep 9-12
Sun. April 22     Assembly 9-4
Sat. April 28          Prep 9-12
Sat. May 5          Assembly 9-4 (Big Sunday Weekend)
Sat. May 12            Prep 9-12
Sat. May 26        Assembly 9-4
Sun. June 3           Prep 9-12
Sat. June 16       Assembly  9-4
Sun. June 24         Prep 9-12
Sat. June 30      Assembly 9-4
Sun. July 1             Yard sale  TBD

IMPORTANT — Please Note: These dates and times are subject to change. Please sign-up for our email list and/or check our website, Facebook and Twitter pages for last-minute updates/changes. Thank you!

Volunteers age 12 and up are welcome to join us at the armory!

If you live in the Los Angeles area and would like to volunteer in person, please email our Volunteer Coordinator prior to the event at: [email protected]. Write “Operation Gratitude Volunteer” in the subject line. State day(s),
shift(s), number of volunteers and email addresses.

For more information about volunteering, please take a few moments to visit our website’s Volunteer Info & Schedule page. For the armory address and all other details, please email our Volunteer Coordinator: [email protected]. Please be sure to put “Operation Gratitude Volunteer” in the subject line.

Thank you for your support!

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