I was just reading a little parenting newsletter that I receive via email and came across this little idea in the blog. I LOVE that people are doing this and wanted to pass it on. By the way, I followed all of the links and it seemed legit... I have copied the blog below.
Yesterday I wrote about cleaning Pikachu’s closet to prepare for all the goodies he’ll soon bring home from school. I mentioned that we’d found a bunch of toys to send to Iraqi children. This is just one of the many great ideas I’ve picked up over at Parent Hacks.
Back in 2006, Asha wrote about Edmay Mayers, a female member of the Army Corps of Engineers stationed in Iraq who was collecting gently used stuffed animals and distributing to Iraqi children.
This was great news because most US-based charities and even many resale shops will not accept used stuffed animals, even ones that look like new. Also, I was thrilled with the idea that Iraqi children might have a reason to like the US soldiers.
We’ve sent two boxes already and each time received a nice note (though it takes months to arrive) with a report of what the Gulf Region Division of the US Army Corps of Engineers has accomplished. The list includes things like hospital and school renovations, water treatment and other projects that address Iraqi quality of life issues.
Each time we prepare a box the boys are a little more generous in letting go of their possessions, though I can’t say whether they are motivated by altruism or, ahem, clearing out more room for Pokemon cards.
This time, our box was filled with “tiny treasures.” Small boxes of crayons, spinning tops, stickers, cute key chains, and colorful new pencils…essentially a decade’s worth of goody bag booty.
I included other items like an outgrown baseball mitt and a bit of hard candy, but you could have knocked me over with a feather when the package was weighed at the post office: 13 pounds! (And you thought I was exaggerating when I said ten year’s worth of treasure.)
You can prepare a similar box and send it to:
You have to fill out a customs form at the post office and I think it generally costs about $15 to send (this time it was about $25). But if it’s building a little love for our country, it’s a good investment.
I realize there are many recent natural disasters at home and abroad that deserve our attention and donations right now, but this is a simple way to give and it’s easy to involve the kids.