It’s Not Just… a Drawstring Bag or Fleece Hat

The story in today’s post is very personal to me, and I am sharing it with you because it illustrates so clearly what many young men and women experience when they are deployed — many of them separated from their families for the very first time.

It’s Not Just… a Paracord Bracelet

Every Care Package delivery will include our signature paracord “survival” bracelets, because we have learned over the past decade that it is not just a paracord bracelet… it is a symbol of appreciation and the strong bonds that Operation Gratitude forges between Americans and their military and first responder heroes.

It’s Not Just… a Handwritten Letter

I’ve heard it hundreds, if not thousands, of times since I started as the CEO of Operation Gratitude three years ago — handwritten letters are the most cherished items in our Care Packages. As a Marine who deployed to more than 50 countries — from the first Gulf War in 1990 -1991 to my time in the Middle East during 2008 — I can tell you nothing boosts morale while you are deployed more than receiving handwritten letters.

How Letter Writing Connects People

“I realized that my letter writing didn’t have to be complicated. It needed to be a piece of positivity. This pandemic has created so much loneliness. People just want a bit of human connection.” – Jake Kelly

It’s Not Just… a Beanie Baby

Each year Operation Gratitude receives tens of thousands of Beanie Babies from grateful Americans across the country, and one goes in every single care package we send to service members deployed around the world.

It’s Not Just… a Care Package

I want you to know, it’s not just a care package… It is an opportunity to go beyond saying “thank you for your service” and build understanding, empathy, and ultimately bridges between civilians and our military, veterans, and first responders.

It’s Not Just… a Battalion Buddy

September 9 is National Teddy Bear Day, and I wanted to share a few stories that demonstrate Operation Gratitude’s Battalion Buddies are much more than just stuffed bears — and give you an opportunity to bring smiles to thousands of military children whose parents will be deployed this September 11th.