Miles of Smiles from the Troops


Smiles and emails like these remind us why we do what we do…

Dear Operation Gratitude: Today I received a care package from your organization. It reminded me that even though my life out here is hectic, my days are crazy busy and my periods of rest always seem to be too short, there are those out there who are appreciative of all that we do and endure and it encouraged me to continue to press on for those people. Thank you for what you do.

So many service members deploy and don’t have someone back home to encourage them or motivate them and it’s wonderful that your organization has people who do so much for guys like that.

Thank you for what you have done, are doing and continue to do for us out here. With much love and appreciation, you all make what we do feel that much easier to do and endure.

Thank you so much! GySgt J.K.D.

EndofYear2013 Collage

We received this email on Christmas Day: 

Operation Gratitude: I would like to say thank you very much for what you all do. It’s Christmas morning over here in Kuwait, and your box is the only present I got to open today and let me tell you — I was all smiles the whole time, teared up a couple times with what those wonderful, beautiful kids wrote.

It’s hard being away from my wife and two daughters but your words and gifts and support make it a little easier.

I got so excited over the ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ DVD and ‘Peanut’ the little blue elephant Teenie Beanie Baby! And I LOVE the hand-knit scarf, very touching. Along with the running socks and all the rest of the goodies!

Please keep doing what you’re doing. It means the world to all of us over here on this side of the world! And the individual label made it really heartfelt and special!

God bless and Merry Christmas! PFC A.M.

The New Year will be here soon — and we already have requests for thousands of Deployed Troop, Veterans and Battalion Buddy Care Packages to ship in January.

Please ensure we can fulfill these requests! Send your tax-deductible donation today: Donate Now

To donate by mail, please make a check payable to Operation Gratitude and send it to:

Operation Gratitude
P.O. Box 260257
Encino, CA 91426-0257

Thank you for your generous support! Over the past 10 years, you have helped us boost the morale of more than a million deployed Service Members, Veterans, Military Children and Wounded Warriors.

Every donation of $15 pays to assemble and ship another care package. 

Happy New Year and THANK YOU from all of us at Operation Gratitude!

About Operation Gratitude

Operation Gratitude annually sends 200,000+ care packages to Veterans, First Responders, New Recruits, Wounded Heroes, their Care Givers, and to individually named U.S. service members deployed overseas and their families waiting at home. Each package is filled with food, entertainment, hygiene and hand-made items, as well as personal letters of support. Our mission is to lift the spirits and meet the evolving needs of the Military and First Responder communities, and provide volunteer opportunities for civilians anywhere in America to express their appreciation to all who serve our nation. Each package contains donated product valued between $45 and $100 and costs our organization $15 to assemble and ship. Since its inception in 2003, Operation Gratitude volunteers have shipped more than 1.6 Million Care Packages.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

24 Responses to Miles of Smiles from the Troops

  1. Carmina Robuck says:

    My family would like to adopt a solider- sending him words of encouragement, care packages, etc. How do we go about getting a solider’s information?

    • We don’t share any personal information — names or addresses — of our care package recipients, but there many different ways you can join our efforts and send words of encouragement to deployed troops. Please visit our website or send an email to if you’d like more information. Thank you!

  2. Mae Moore says:

    I was wanting to send some Christmas Cards to the troops overseas. Is there a deadline that you need to receive them by to have them delivered in time?

  3. I want to send a box to a soldier what kind of box should i purchase and where do i send it to

  4. Pingback: Having a Bad Day? Thank a U.S. Service Member

  5. Lisa says:

    How should I go about sending a paper letter to military personnel from a single home-schooled student? It recommends not putting the child’s address, which I understand, but what is a good alternative? And, where should the letter be mailed?

  6. dani says:

    I am a daisy GS troop leader and one of our projects this year we were hoping to donate some cookies for care packages. Would that be possible?

  7. Jessica says:

    I heard we can send our kids Halloween candy to troops and my kids and I would love to do that this year. How do we go about doing this?

  8. nikki62785 says:

    How can I write to a solider???

  9. Alison Tucker says:

    This is great! If you ever want to expand to NorCal there’s a bunch of us up here willing to help package, fundraise, etc. I wouldn’t know where to start with making my own 501 but hopefully someday… Our troops deserve good people like you! Thank you for all you do!

  10. Laura says:

    My school is looking to put together care packages for the troops. Do you know how I can hook up with an organization that will ship them? Any info would be great.

    Thank you!!

    • I don’t know of any organization that will take already-made care packages and ship them to the troops. For a variety of reasons, that would be difficult. All care packages sent overseas, for instance, need to have customs forms filled out and signed and we cannot sign a customs form for a package we didn’t personally put together. We accept donations of items and letters of thanks that we incorporate into Operation Gratitude care packages; for security reasons all of our packages are assembled at our Van Nuys, CA headquarters. For more information about organizing a collection drive, please see this blog post: Thank you for supporting the troops!

  11. Nicolette says:

    So glad I found this site! Hope my donation lets the troops know they are not far from our hearts and minds.

  12. Pingback: Look What You Did | Operation Gratitude Blog

  13. Missy's Crafty Mess says:

    Great post. It really made my day.

  14. Mustang.Koji says:

    Thank you, Gunnery Sergeant and PFC.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s