Marines still need care packages in Afghanistan, but the focus on the troop withdrawal has meant fewer people are paying attention to them. However, the Canonsburg Elks Lodge in Pennsylvania has not forgotten the soldiers overseas and has spent days putting together care packages for them.
Lance Cpl. Brandon Wehrle’s battalion in Afghanistan is about to get a huge surprise in the shape of multiple care packages, according to the Observer Reporter. His parents helped participate in the event, but the care packages will be shared among all the Marines and not just their son. They received help from others at the Canonsburg Elks Lodge who spent time shopping, packing, donating and shipping.
The Canonsburg Elks Lodge gathered 300 pounds of supplies for the care packages with help from local schools, families, friends and businesses. The items ranged from snacks to wipes and included cookies, cheeses, dry meats and many other items. Food was not the only thing on the list, and the care packages include sanitary items.
There are still troops stationed in Afghanistan, but the United States’ decision to slowly withdraw means that bases and services are being eliminated. Troops still need basic items, yet it is more difficult to obtain them. In addition, the focus on the withdrawal means that troops are not getting as much media attention and donations compared to the past.
The Marines have a wish list of items ranging from new socks to tootsie pops. The products they need include certain clothing items, snacks, food, hygiene products and other things. It is not easy to obtain these items in Afghanistan, so the care packages play an important role. They also serve as an important reminder that someone cares about the troops and wants them to come home.
The success of the first set of care packages from the Canonsburg Elks Lodge means the members are planning to turn this into a monthly event. They are considering the care packages a crucial part of their outreach program, and they know the Marines will continue to need their support. As troops come home, the Canonsburg Elks Lodge plans to help other battalions still in Afghanistan to make sure no one gets neglected. Some cheese snacks and cookies may seem trivial to people at home, but in Afghanistan these items are precious for the troops. It is one of their few chances to get a taste of home.