Military deployments, distance and hospital stays mean many service members and veterans will be separated from their families during the holiday season.
The American Red Cross Holiday Mail for Heroes program helps people to "Give Something That Means Something" by sending a card of thanks and support to the members of the Armed Forces, veterans or their families through Dec. 7.
Address the card "Dear Service Member, Veteran or Military Family" - because those cards can be shared with anyone in the military community - then write a heartfelt message. Then cards can be set to: Holiday Mail for Heroes, PO Box 5456, Capitol Heights, MD, 20791-5456, where Pitney Bowes scans them to ensure safety and security. Red Cross volunteers then sort and deliver them to service members, veterans, and their families at military installations, in Veterans Administration and military hospitals and veteran's organizations in the United States and overseas.
The Red Cross relies on the generosity of the American people to carry out its mission of service to the two million members of the U.S. Armed Forces, 24 million veterans, and their families. The Red Cross supports service members and their families before, during and after deployments. It prepares families for the realities of deployment with educational courses and keeps families in touch during emergencies with its global communication services.
Financial donations are being accepted at redcross.org or by calling 800-733-2767.
Blood donations are also accepted. To make an appointment, visit redcrossblood.org or call 800-733-2767.
The American Red Cross of Southwestern New York is a United Way agency.