Operation Gratitude

Teaching children the value of giving back by donating Halloween candy in support of Operation Gratitude (OG) is a win-win for kids, parents, and dentists.

“The Wiregrass Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) and the Coffee County Veterans (CCV) organizations have joined with the national Operation Gratitude to help send care packages to our servicemembers as well as help local first responders and the children of needy families,” stated OG spokesperson Travis Parker. “Please bring all unopened leftover candy to our local drop-off point at WVVL 101 Radio Station by the Boll Weevil Monument. The candy that can’t be sent to our servicemembers and first responders will be donated to various groups for local distribution. Kids like candy 365 days a year, so none will go to waste. Some organizations are having Trunk or Treat instead of the traditional door-to-door event, so any leftover candy from that is also appreciated.”

This Halloween, local trick-or-treaters will join kids across the country when they donate their extra Halloween candy to Operation Gratitude. The sweet treats will be included along with handwritten thank you letters in care packages sent to U.S. servicemembers deployed overseas, and hand delivered to veterans and first responders serving in their local communities.

Americans spend an estimated $2.5 billion on a whopping 600 million pounds of Halloween candy each year. In 2019, more than 500,000 pounds of candy was donated to Operation Gratitude and distributed to America’s heroes in signature Operation Gratitude Care Packages and local deliveries around the country.

Last year, the biggest blessing came after the deadline to ship had already passed. The Christian Mission donated several hundred pounds of candy and that was sorted and bagged by local groups. Some of this was given to the Enterprise and Elba Nursing Homes, along with letters to the veterans there from the Enterprise State Community College students. Other candy was given to local schools, churches and organizations for various uses. The Enterprise Civitan Club used some at their Christmas functions for kids. The Shriner’s took some to throw out at area parades.

Candy and handwritten thank you letters for deployed servicemembers, veterans and first responders will be collected at WVVL 101 Radio Station from Oct. 26 - Nov. 6, from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. For those who can’t deliver the candy and notes, call 494-7846 for a pick-up.

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