LONGVIEW — Once a week, the Richard A. Holloway Memorial American Legion Auxiliary Assemblage 131 in Longview meets to assignment on a appropriate project.
“Our mission is to accommodate abundance to the troops by auspicious them to accumulate in advice with their families,” says Linda O’Hart, co-founder of “Texas Cards for Troops”.
It’s been seven years aback O’Hart and ALA Assemblage 131 President, Linda Langley founded the nonprofit, “Texas Cards for Troops”. Aback then, the accumulation has met at the First Lutheran Church in Longview every Thursday to actualize bags of handmade greeting cards to accelerate to deployed troops of every aggressive branch.
“What we do is we accomplish cards to accelerate to them so that they can accelerate them aback to the ancestors for all occasions,” says O’Hart.
All the women are retired, and abounding accept ancestors associates who either are or accept served in the military. Anniversary year, they accelerate two shipments to troops overseas. One accession is beatific in March, and accession is beatific in October, both afore the above holidays like Mother’s Day and Christmas. The accession they’re currently alive on will be beatific to troops in Turkey. Thus far, “Texas Cards for Troops” has mailed bales to eight countries, bristles battleships and several bounded Veteran Health hospitals.
“We put a little abridged flag, cocoa, and oatmeal, aloof article to admonish them of home. And we put in a few peppermint candies, an acknowledgment card, a brace of Christmas cards, altogether cards, a brace of all break cards, and an accessory of some kind.”
A dozen or added of the cards are included in about 200 packets the ladies put calm for anniversary shipment. Anniversary packet additionally includes snacks, knitted items, a baby abridged American flag, and acknowledgment cards active by the group, accouchement and associates of the community. In all, the accumulation about sends anywhere amid 2,000-3,500 cards anniversary time.
“The flags are bankrupt and put in this little artificial bag with a agenda on it that says, ‘a banderole for your abridged so you can consistently backpack a little allotment of home. We’re praying for you and we are so appreciative of you. Thank you for arresting our Country and our Freedom,’” says Elizabeth Taylor, Peppy Blount ALA Assemblage 320, Rockin’ Grannys president.
Taylor’s Gilmer-based ALA affiliate adopted the action afterwards acquirements of the assignment actuality done by the ladies in Longview. Now, the Rockin’ Grannys provides the anxiously bankrupt baby American flags that are included in every packet the accumulation sends out. They additionally aggregate recycled greeting cards from bodies in the association to re-purpose and accelerate to the troops.
“It’s alone all positive,” says Taylor. “With the assignment that you do, you apperceive that it’s activity across for our troops.”
In accession to sending the cards and packets to soldiers overseas, the accumulation makes abiding to do the aforementioned for servicemen and women who are stationed in the states.
“A being will alpha talking to one of us and we ask if they accept anybody in the military, and would they like for us to accelerate them a packet for Christmas,” says O’Hart. “If we can get their cooperation, we accelerate not alone to the being they recommended but additionally their unit.”
The accumulation uses donations, profits from sales events, and their own money to pay for postage and food to accomplish the cards and packets. They additionally advance for added ALA activities aimed to abutment veterans, like “Run for the Wall” and acceptable at the Longview VA Clinic.
Over the years, the accumulation has accustomed several belletrist and ability of acknowledgment to appearance their affectionate assignment doesn’t go unnoticed.
“We don’t charge a ‘thank you’, but one ‘thank you’ goes a actor afar for us,” says Linda Langley, ALA Assemblage 131 admiral and “Texas Cards for Troops” co-founder. “We’ve accustomed a letter thanking you from the USS Cole, from Commander Neilson. We accept gotten belletrist of acknowledgment from the Army, from the Marines, and one of our groups absolutely beatific us a gift.”
Langley says one of their capital goals is to animate added auxiliaries to accept the “Texas Cards for Troops” program.
“We appetite added agenda makers, churches and clubs to get involved,” Langley says. “We accept hundreds of bags of militaries serving. They charge some TLC. We can all do our part. If you’re a knitter, crochet, a agenda maker, alike aloof packing a box. It agency so abundant to them.”
If you accept a admired one in the account and would like them to accept a appropriate packet from “Texas Cards for Troops” or if you’d like to accomplish a donation to the group, alarm 903-759-9214 or email [email protected]
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