On March 20, 2003, Operation Gratitude sent its first four Care Packages to deployed Service Members in Iraq, and began its mission to lift the morale of U.S. Troops, bring smiles to Service Members’ faces and express the appreciation and support of the American people.
Since then, Operation Gratitude has sent more than 2.9 million Care Packages, including to Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen deployed to countries and oceans around the globe. Generous citizens donate hundreds of thousands of “Wish List” items each year to fill the Care Packages. Through donation drives, letter writing campaigns, craft projects, hands-on volunteer events and other activities, our mission is to provide every American an opportunity to say “thank you” to those who serve, as we work together to strengthen communities and bridge the civilian-service divide.
CARE PACKAGE RECIPIENTS
SPC. A.P., USAR
‘Thank you for all that you do for the United States Military and all of the members that defend our freedom and the American way of life. We received your care packages for our unit and were extremely pleased. Deploying to austere and hostile combat environments is part of the job that we signed up for. Supporting us with the things that you provide is a great morale booster for our unit.’
‘Thank you from all of us. The looks on my Troopers’ faces were priceless. Thank you once again to everyone involved. This was a high morale booster!’
JK, US NAVY
‘It was Christmas in July for us when we got these. Thanks!’
‘Thank you so much from 3/11 M BTRY! We appreciate all you do for us and the troops across the world. We are loving and enjoying all of the items we received.’
what’s inside the CARE PACKAGE?
Every Operation Gratitude Care Package, valued between $45 and $100, contains products donated by service-friendly companies; as well as handmade scarves and quick-deploy paracord bracelets, handwritten letters of gratitude and other “Wish List” items donated by grateful Americans.
Service Members tell us that handmade items and thank you letters are the most treasured items received. Additional care package goodies include: Beanie Babies, snack items, hygiene kits, games, puzzles, energy shots, coffee, body wipes, hand sanitizer, and other special treats that provide reminders of home.
Each Care Package is packed with love by volunteers at our Forward Operating Base (aka “The FOB”) in Chatsworth, California, and then individually addressed and mailed to a Service Member deployed far away from home.