It started out as a request from my sister in Birmingham, Alabama. Sort of a "Hey, Kip needs some help in Afghanistan." Kip is one of those high school friends that I haven't really seen in years, but he has a Facebook Relationship with those of us who attended Druid Hills High School way back in the late 1900s. And with the advent of social media, word travels a wee bit faster than by Pony Express.
One thing we sometimes forget about our men and women in service overseas: They do much more than just fire guns at the enemy. They look at the people they are trying to protect and, well, they tend to get protective. The land routes out of Pakistan have been shut down, and though our troops are experiencing dwindling supplies themselves, all the blankets in the exchange store have already been bought for distribution among the villages.
This fact touches me in a way that I can't explain. Our men and women are experiencing the same winter temperatures and heavy snowfall, but choose to hand out supplies using their own money to the families in need there.
But one thing we know about our community, it responds to these kinds of needs in a big way. I love that!
The request was simple but heartfelt from Kabul: "With the very cold temperatures and heavy snowfall here in Kabul, over 20 children have died recently from exposure. Rather than send me a care package, please send a box of blankets. The medics here at NKC have a blanket drive underway and will take care of the distribution. When you go to church this morning, maybe think about starting a Blanket Ministry."
It's smoky and smelly in Kabul, according to Lieutenant Commander Kip. The air is heavy with smoke as everything is being burned - even tires. "They just want to keep warm."
So we're going to blanket Afghanistan with some love. Donations of blankets, hats and gloves will be accepted at the following locations:
Justin Garner's AMAI in Loganville, in downtown Grayson, in Loganville, in Snellville, and in Grayson.
Though not tax deductible, you may also make monetary donations to help with the mailing costs at any of these locations with checks made out to Operation Love From Home who will handle this part of the "mission." Monetary donations to Afghanistan will not help for this cause; there are simply no blankets there to be bought (he says there are no WalMarts ... go figure!), but if anyone would like to make a personal shipment to Kip for distribution, please contact me or Loganville-Grayson Patch Editor, Sharon Swanepoel through our comment section and we'll get back to you with details.