Sears, the retailer, has a wishlist registry program entitled “Heroes At Home” which is designed to benefit members of the military, veterans, and their families. Through their web site, you can make a non-tax-deductible donation to help a serviceman or woman, a veteran, and their families this holiday season. This is so useful to those who are separated from their loved ones, or to those who have families in need this season. Perhaps you know someone in such a position right now. (When I was young, my father served in the military, and those early years afterwards were lean and rough, but we made it through, and we frequently support programs of this kind.)
Once you arrive at the Sears Heroes at Home site you can click “See How You Can Help” to read their stories in their own words. Nearly 32,000 families nationwide are represented on the site. The stories told reflect whatever the member or their family wishes to share about their background, their families, their current status, their needs and wishes, and their hopes for the future. Details show how many people are in the family and the state in which they reside.
One story I read was from a New York serviceman who had left behind a 2 year old son with his grandparents. He told how he had missed their son’s second birthday, and wouldn’t likely see them until next year. For now, he just wanted to see that his son received something nice. Items included some pajamas, a coat, a sweater, and a shirt, or a Wii game console.
Another was from a serviceman with a family of 6 in Arkansas. He, too, had a young son whom he would be away from soon. He also wanted to provide a few household items for his wife.
There appears to be no minimum donation, and some items on the wish lists cost as little as $10. The donations are not tax-deductible, and the collected monies are used to purchase gift cards which are distributed equally to each of the recipients of the program. Whether you choose to donate or not, you have the option of leaving messages of support. As far as I can tell these messages are kept private, and are likely forwarded.
My wish is that you’ll take a look, read their stories, and make a contribution.