Red Cross calls on the community’s support

Posted 10/20/21

The South Florida Red Cross is calling on the community to help...

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Red Cross calls on the community’s support

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FORT MYERS — The South Florida Red Cross is calling on the community to help bring the holiday season to our nation’s heroes. Every year, the Red Cross launches its Holiday for Heroes campaign to spread holiday cheer and gratitude to military troops and veterans for their sacrifice and service to our country.

For more than a decade, the Red Cross has relied on the support and generosity of the community to donate items and write messages of thanks for holiday care packages that will be sent to troops overseas and veterans in local hospitals. This year, the Red Cross offers two initiatives the community can take part in.

The first initiative, Holiday Care Packages for Heroes, provides the community with the opportunity to donate items for care packages to military members and local area veterans that are in hospitals or nursing homes for the holidays. These items and messages are graciously donated by the community and placed inside holiday stockings hand-sewn by volunteers. For more than 10 years, South Florida Red Cross volunteers have cut and sewn hundreds of stockings in what started in the Naples and Fort Myers area but has spread throughout the entire region.

The Red Cross, with lead partner Arthrex, Inc. and other sponsors will assemble and deliver these stuffed holiday stockings for military members and local area veterans who are away from their families during the holidays.

The second initiative, Holiday Gifts for Veteran Families, provides the community with the opportunity to donate gifts for veteran families during the holidays. In a time where many families have needed comfort and relief, the Red Cross is helping to spread hope and happiness by giving back to veterans and their children this holiday season.

“It’s incredibly important to let our service members and veterans know how much we appreciate them,” said Josett Valdez, Reginal CEO for the South Florida Red Cross. “When you are far from home or in a hospital or nursing home, especially around the holidays, many feel detached from their loved ones, so to receive a care package and well wishes from home is powerful. It makes you feel connected and reminds you that the sacrifices being made are for a worthy cause and are not forgotten.”

This year, in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the usual drop-off locations have been transitioned to online gift registries. Using the registries, the community can purchase requested items for direct shipment to the South Florida Red Cross distribution team.

For Holiday Care Packages for Heroes, purchases MUST be made by Friday, Oct. 29 from the Holiday for Heroes online gift registry.

For Holiday Gifts for Veteran Families, purchases MUST be made by Friday, Nov. 26, 2021 from the Holiday Gifts for Veteran Families online gift registry.

To learn more about Holiday for Heroes, please visit redcross.org/holidayforheroes

This year, in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the usual drop-off locations have been transitioned to online gift registries. Using the registries, the community can purchase requested items for direct shipment to the South Florida Red Cross distribution team.

For Holiday Care Packages for Heroes, purchases MUST be made by Friday, Oct. 29 from the Holiday for Heroes online gift registry.

For Holiday Gifts for Veteran Families, purchases MUST be made by Friday, Nov. 26, 2021 from the Holiday Gifts for Veteran Families online gift registry.

To learn more about Holiday for Heroes, please visit redcross.org/holidayforheroes.

About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org/southflorida or visit us on Facebook or Twitter at @SFLRedCross.

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