MAKE A DIFFERENCE: Blue Star Mothers count on us for holiday care packages

Our Make a Difference readers have been contributing items to the Blue Star Mothers for many years and that wonderful organization once again needs our help. The members are gearing up for their annual Christmas stocking event held in early November.

The national organization is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that’s been supporting active-duty military and veterans since World War II. Our local chapter, Miami Valley Chapter # 3, has a mission of “supporting active duty military members, deployed troops, local veterans, and each other.”

“Our chapter has been in the Dayton area since 2004,” says Robin Bradley, second vice president. “We are mothers of honorably and medically discharged veterans serving in the military, guard, or reserve.”

Every week, volunteers pack and send care packages to deployed service members and send an average of 20 boxes a week. “Currently, Chapter #3 is preparing for our biggest event of the year,” explains Bradley. " In November, members will gather to stuff Christmas stockings with various goodies and snacks for deployed military personnel who will be overseas for the holidays. We are preparing to send over 1,000 stockings this year.”

Last year, a group of sailors from Rota, Spain wrote this note of appreciation. ”Thank you so much for all the candy, stockings, and gifts. What a great way to start the holidays here, so far from our families. It really means a lot.”

Blue Star Mothers relies solely on donations from the community. Financial help is always needed to cover mailing costs and purchase items for the stockings and care packages. Bradley says each stocking and its contents cost about $20 to fill, while each care package has approximately $30 worth of items. This doesn’t include the cost of shipping, which increases each year.

Bradley says Make a Difference readers always come through and asks that we continue donating these items:

  • Small packs of cookies
  • Rice Krispy treats (individually wrapped)
  • Small packs of fruit snacks
  • Tubes of nuts
  • Tubes of trail mix
  • Granola bars
  • Protein bars
  • Slim Jims
  • Hot chocolate packets
  • Apple cider packets
  • Individual tubes of drink mixes
  • Tic Tacs
  • Gum
  • Chapstick.

Donations can be dropped off from 9 a.m. until noon on Saturdays at the Chapter #3 Troop Center at 6661 Clyo Road, Centerville.

A more complete list of items that are needed for care packages is available on the website:

Other ways to help

  • You’ll find a PayPal link as well as a link to the Amazon Wish List on the website.
  • Checks can be made out to Blue Star Mothers, Chapter #3, and sent to:

Blue Star Mothers #3

P.O. Box 292722

Kettering, Ohio 45429

Want to join?

Applications for membership are available on the website or at the troop center. All questions can be addressed by the Second Vice President at


Meredith Moss writes about Dayton-area nonprofit organizations and their specific needs. If your group has a wish list it would like to share with our readers, contact Meredith:

Please include a daytime phone number and a photo that reflects your group’s mission.

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