Between Nov. 2-Dec. 7, the public is invited to send a 'touch of home" through holiday cards that contain messages of cheer and appreciation. Cards will then be screened, sorted and boxed for delivery by hundreds of Red Cross volunteers.
"One holiday card is all it takes to make a difference in the life of the millions of active duty military men and women, veterans and family members," American Red Cross Wabash Valley Chapter Military Services Coordinator Mary Beth Jensen said. "The American Red Cross serves and supports members of the military, veterans and their families by providing emergency communications, comfort and assistance each day.
"The Holiday Mail for Heroes" program continues the Red Cross tradition of service to the armed forces.
And, 2,000 of the cards will be returned to the Wabash Valley Chapter for distribution to local military families and veterans."
Last year, hundreds of volunteers screened, sorted and packaged cards that were delivered to military bases, veterans and military hospitals across the nation and worldwide.
The Wabash Valley Chapters will be collecting cards from the public on Veteran's Day, Nov. 11, at three area locations, including:
* Chapter's Terre Haute headquarters, 700 S. Third Street, 4-7 p.m.,
* Chapter's Greencastle office (in the back of the courthouse annex), 3-6 p.m., and
* First Baptist Church Reed Fellowship Hall, Paris, Ill., 3-6 p.m.
These will be the only times that cards may be brought to the local Red Cross.
Before and after Nov. 11, the public may address and send cards directly to:
* Holiday Mail for Heroes, PO Box 5456, Capitol Heights, Md., 20791-5456
All cards must be postmarked before Dec. 7.
Card guidelines include:
* Ensure all cards are signed,
* Use Dear Service Member, Family or Veteran (cards addressed to specific individuals cannot be delivered through the program), and
* Limit the number of cards to 15 from any one person or 50 from any one school class, business or group. Bundle the cards and place them in large mailing envelopes. Each card does not need its own envelope.
* Send letters,
* Include e-mail or home addresses on the cards,
* Include cards with excessive amounts of glitter. Because cards may be received by wounded service members and veterans in hospitals, large quantities of glitter could aggravate existing health problems, and
* Include inserts of any kind, including photos.
Visit www.wabashvalleyredcross to learn more about Wabash Valley Chapter Services to the armed forces.
The American Red Cross Wabash Valley Chapter serves Clay, Greene, Parke, Putnam, Sullivan, Vermillion and Vigo counties in Indiana, and Edgar County in Illinois.