HILLSBOROUGH –Operation Shoebox New Jersey reached a milestone during the V annual Hillsborough Rotary Christmas Packing recently – 1more than 00,000 care packages shipped to US troops deployed around the world.

More than 800 volunteers helped sort donations, assemble and pack 1,644 care packages during the event held at the Hillsborough YMCA.

The total number of boxes shipped now stands at 100,244.

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The statewide organization, based in Hillsborough, celebrated its tenth anniversary earlier this year, and has been sending care packages overseas since February, 2005.

“I continue to be overwhelmed by the generosity and commitment of individuals and organizations that continue to support our efforts,” said Rod Hirsch, founder and executive director of OPSHBX NJ.

Hirsch noted that the organization has not had to spend any money on the contents of its boxes in nearly 11 years.

“Everything that goes into those care packages, from Girl Scout cookies and candy to toothpaste and toothbrushes, has been donated,” he said.

Corporations like Johnson&Johnson, TD Bank, Investors’ Bank, the Somerset Patriots and smaller businesses, doctor’s offices, civic organizations, veterans’ organizations, schools, churches, senior citizen clubs, families and individuals have contributed to the success of the organization over the years.

Hirsch said OPSHBX NJ will continue to host packings and recruit volunteers indefinitely.

“Operation Shoebox New Jersey will continue to support our men and women deployed overseas for as long as there is a need,” Hirsch said.

The United States military has assets in more than 150 countries.

Those interested in volunteering with OPSHBX NJ can visit the website at www.opshoeboxnj.org or call (908) 698-0333.

Financial support is also needed to help ensure the supply line of care packages overseas continues uninterrupted. OPSHBX NJ is a 501C3 non-profit corporation, and all donations are tax deductible.

Editor’s Note: Rod Hirsch is the managing editor of Tap into Hillsborough