The Packages From Home Story
Packages From Home began as a labor of love for my son, Christian, a soldier with the Army's 1st Infantry Division. Christian was deployed to Iraq in March 2004. I began sending care packages to him on a regular basis. When I received a phone call from him thanking me for all of the comfort items from home, I found out that my son was the only soldier in his squad receiving any packages from home. Some friends and I decided to adopt his squad, and began shipping packages to the men in his unit. This is the point where "Packages From Home" was born.
Along with my friends and neighbors, I began having "packing parties" in my garage every month or so, sending requested and needed items to Christian's squad. As we all know, volunteering for a good cause is contagious. As the small group of volunteers kept sending packages, more and more people began to get involved. In October 2004, our small organization received a call from a local a.m. radio talk show host, Bruce Jacobs from KFYI Radio inviting me to be on his morning talk show to talk about what we were doing. After the appearance on his sihow, my phone lines lit up. Some people wanted to donate money, other people wanted to donate items, and more people wanted to donate their time to help support the squad.
The grassroots effort began to grow by leaps and bounds from November 2004. By then we realized that the amount of donated goods, and the money coming in to ship the items would require us to request charitable status with the IRS. Packages From Home then became a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.
Our primary purpose is to provide food, personal care, and recreational items to deployed American troops, at no cost to them. We collect donated items from generous patriotic citizens who live all across America. These items include non-perishable food, personal toiletries, and recreational items like games, books, music CDs and movie DVDs. A list of items needed by the troops is available on our "Things to Donate" page along with the location of "Drop Off Locations" in the greater Phoenix Arizona area where items may be donated. (No alcohol, tobacco products, pressurized containers, x-rated materials or any other item deemed unsuitable or unsafe will ever be sent by us.) Our staff and volunteers carefully pack the donations into U.S. Post Office Flat-Rate Priority Mail boxes. The boxes are then mailed to U.S. servicemen and women who are deployed overseas in harm's way. Monetary donations go towards mailing costs and/or purchasing of special items to send to the troops
In 2012 we expanded our mission based on the needs of our veterans who were in transition, homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. For more information on the Packages For Hope project and the items needed to fill the care bags, please visit our “Packages For Hope” page.
Packages from Home is one of the organizations listed and recognized by the Department of Defense to send care packages in support of our troops. We have been featured on many Military related websites, such as The Military Report and America Supports You. Sometimes people ask us for names of soldiers to whom they can send packages on their own. However, to ensure the security of our Military we cannot release the names or addresses of any armed forces personnel in our database.
Whether you are in Arizona or in another state, we hope you can find it in your heart to give a little back to our proud troops still serving abroad and our veterans..
Founder of Packages From Home