EDISON, NJ – Operation Shoebox New Jersey volunteers traveled to the campus of Middlesex County College Thursday to work alongside student veterans and the school’s Veteran Services Center to pack 500 personal care packages that will be shipped to US troops deployed overseas.
The packing – in commemoration of Friday’s national celebration of Veterans Day - was preceded by a ceremonial flag raising at the College Center Circle and a veterans “Meet and Greet” in the Parkview Room Lobby at West Hall, where veterans were honored for their service by George Lisicki, former National Commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and a member of the MCC Board of Trustees.
Thursday’s event marked the second year in a row that Operation Shoebox New Jersey worked with the Veterans Service Center assembling care packages, coordinated by Rich Feldman, director of the nationally-acclaimed program, which works with veterans who are pursuing their college education under the GI Bill.
Veterans, students, faculty, staff and visitors packed each box with a variety of food and snack items, toiletry and personal care items, bags of loose candy and boxes of Girl Scout cookies. Each box also contained letters from Feldman and Rod Hirsch, executive director of Operation Shoebox New Jersey, as well as cards and letters from children in schools throughout New Jersey.
The MCC Veterans Day commemoration concluded with a 5 pm reception of veterans’ art work at the campus Studio Art Gallery.
Operation Shoebox New Jersey is a volunteer 501C3 non-profit corporation based in Hillsborough NJ. Founded in February, 2005, volunteers have assembled and shipped over 120,000 personal care packages around the world.
Volunteers are encouraged to attend two upcoming Operation Shoebox New Jersey events to help assemble holiday care packages for shipment overseas.
The first is on Saturday, Nov. 19 at the Manville VFW, 600 Washington Ave., Manville from 11 am-2 pm; the final packing event of the year is on Saturday, Dec. 3, 11 am-2 pm at the Hillsborough YMCA. Those wishing to participate are asked to donate any of the following items – personal/ travel size packaging preferred: toothbrushes, toothpaste, moist wipes, deodorant, powder, ear swabs, pocket tissues, socks; 1 oz. boxes of dry cereal, beef jerky/Slim Jims, pop-top cans of tuna fish, pop-top cans of fruit, drink mix powders (Crystal Lite), microwave popcorn, gum.
Financial support is also needed to defray costs of shipping boxes overseas. A PayPal link can be accessed on the website.
Further information is available by calling (908) 698-0333 or online at www.opshoeboxnj.org.