Valentine boxes to be sent to overseas soldiers, volunteers needed

January 25, 2019
By Marcy Shortuse

■ STAFF REPORT
Have you been looking for a way to bring a smile to a soldier’s face? You are invited to join a band of experienced volunteers from St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church on Saturday, Jan. 26 at 9 a.m. or 11 a.m. at the church’s Chapter House at the corner of 4th Street and Gilchrist Avenue on Boca Grande.
Parishioner Kim Lovo has again this year carefully organized each element of this generous outreach effort. This month St. Andrew’s parishioners shopped for healthy snacks and much-needed personal supplies for deployed soldiers. They stuffed their reusable Red Bags with protein bars, Slim Jims, powdered drinks, dried or canned meats and ready-to-eat fish and nuts and high-energy sweets.  Parishioners completed the necessary overseas shipping labels. A generous anonymous donor contributed the substantial cost of the long-distance postage. Here’s where you can still join this worthy cause.
On Saturday, Jan. 26, volunteers are needed at 9 a.m. to unpack the stuffed Red Bags and organize donations onto tables by category. At 11 a.m. a second team of volunteers will help pack a varied selection of goodies into more than 100 individual boxes for shipping to members of the U.S. armed forces deployed overseas. Some volunteers will seal the tightly filled boxes, apply the completed mailing labels and insert personal notes of gratitude into each soldier’s box. Another team will deliver the sealed boxes to the post office for shipping. With so many hands, the work goes quickly, but the job satisfaction lasts a long time.
For further information or to volunteer, please contact Kimberly Lovo at (571) 218-9456 or kim.e.lovo@gmail.com. Students may earn community service credits by joining in this patriotic outreach activity.