NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – A Christian nonprofit organization hopes to brighten the holidays for 2,000 military spouses and kids away from a deployed loved one with a holiday care package and a personalized card, simply saying thank you.
Holiday cheer spreads alongside family and traditions for many, but for others, it’s an emotional season separated from a loved one deployed.
Military families make a considerable sacrifice every day, especially during the holidays.
Volunteers from the nonprofit Christian organization, Support Military Families, get in the holiday spirit as they fill 1,000 boxes for children and another 1,000 for military spouses.
Twice a year, during the spring and the holiday season, the group recognizes military families who are away from loved ones.
“We like to say they don’t wear a uniform or have a rank, but they serve us all every day,” said Support Military Families Founder Diane Rumley.
Handwritten cards, bibles, scarves, and jewelry are gifted to spouses. Military children, known as littlest heroes, receive a book about Jesus, stuffed animals, toys, and coloring books.
“We tell the people in uniform ‘thank you,’ but we don’t get to tell their family ‘thank you,’ so this is just a thank you from us to them and just let them know we are thinking about them and caring for them and praying for them,” volunteer Jennifer Phipps said.
This holiday season marks the group’s 10th anniversary, representing 70,000 packages gifted to military families.
“Many of the military families are away from their loved ones, away from home. I have 14 grandchildren and they are away from grandma and grandpa, and this is just a simple way we can brighten their holidays and say ‘thank you,’” Rumley said.
Diane told News13 while 2,000 packages may sound like a lot, it’s only the beginning.
She says more than 1 million military family members deserve a care package and the organization will continue filling packages through the season.
Every donation impacts a military family. The organization welcomes volunteers, gift donations, and handwritten cards. To find out how to give to the cause or get involved, click here.