Valentine’s Day: How to Show Your Appreciation for Service Members Overseas

by Amy Myers
valentines-day-how-show-your-appreciation-service-members-overseas

As couples begin to make plans for Valentine’s Day, let’s not forget those who have a reservation on base or overseas. Holidays can be some of the hardest days for U.S. service members who are missing their loved ones back home. Thankfully, though, there are ways that you can help our heroes feel the love even when they’re miles away.

Several nonprofit organizations are holding Valentine’s Day card drives that are the perfect opportunity to show your appreciation for our service members. Among them is Hugs for Soldiers, a Georgia-based organization that helps civilians send cards and letters to the troops year-round. In the spirit of the February holiday, Hugs for Soldiers will bundle the cards in care packages. They’ll then send these to active service members in need of support.

In order to reach service members in time for Valentine’s Day, the organization recommends sending your handwritten letters and sentiments a couple of weeks early, as shipping typically takes up to two weeks.

If you’re interested in sending a card and optional unsealed card envelope to Hugs for Soldiers, you can use one of the following two addresses:

Hugs for Soldiers
P.O. Box 2887
Duluth, GA 30096

If using FedEx or UPS: 

Hugs for Soldiers
Duluth First United Methodist Church
3208 Duluth Highway 120
Duluth, GA 30096

Additional Organizations Sending Valentine’s Day Card to Active Duty Service Members

Similar to Hugs for Soldiers, California-based nonprofit Operation Gratitude is organizing a drive that allows civilians to send cards and care packages to active service members. Alternatively, for those that want to help service members send sentiments to their own loved ones, Operation Gratitude’s “Greeting Card Brigade” accepts blank, handmade cards that they will then send to service members. That way, these heroes can pass along their message of love to the ones they’re fighting for back home.

Just as with Hugs for Soldiers, Operation Gratitude will try to get the service members Valentine’s Day cards in time for the holiday. However, if you’re unsure if your heart-themed card will make it there in time, a timeless, gratitude card works just as well. Visit Operation Gratitude’s website here for handmade card and care package specifications and requirements.

Send your cards to the following address:

Operation Gratitude
9409 Owensmouth
Chatsworth CA 91311

Another organization helping to spread the Valentine’s Day cheer is Soldiers’ Angels Valentines for Veterans. Not only does this Texas-based nonprofit send cards to troops overseas, but they also provide cards to veterans in VA hospitals across the country. As a part of their “Valentines for Veterans” campaign, Soldiers’ Angels is asking for civilians to send store-bought or handmade cards. Additionally, you can also send individually wrapped candies to give them an extra sweet treat for the holiday. In order to participate in the campaign, send $1 cash or check with your sentiments to cover shipping costs.

You can send your Valentine’s Day cards up until February 14:

Soldiers’ Angels Valentines for Veterans
2895 NE Loop 410, Suite 107
San Antonio, TX 78218

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