How a pair of sandals can save lives
Dear friends and supporters,
We often tell you that our troops need something to help local people - sandals, blankets, tools, irrigation gear ... you name it.
You have probably wondered: What difference do these things really make?
The answer is that these simple items help save the lives of American Marines and Soldiers.
It may be hard to believe sandals can save lives. But it's true. Please take a minute to read why and learn 3 ways you can help our troops right now.
I met Gunnery Sergeant Shawn Delgado in June 2004 in Ramadi, Iraq. He asked if Spirit of America could provide sandals so children could play outside on streets that were otherwise too hot. In two weeks we provided the sandals he needed. Shawn was recently interviewed for a story in the Marines' Leatherneck Magazine. This is what he said:
"The biggest benefit that Spirit of America provides to the Marine on the "front line" is that it allows us to approach the populace of an area from another direction. When we come in to potentially help them with some sort of short fall, we are filling a need that otherwise would not be addressed. Because of all of the negative reports, it is easy to forget that the vast majority of the people are not hostile to us. The quickest way to turn them hostile is to treat them that way. Spirit of America allows us the tools to be able to approach them on a personal level and to connect with them outside of a hostile encounter."
Shawn's point is simple but profound. With your support, the goods Spirit of America provides reduce hostility. And, reducing hostility saves lives. That is the experience of a Marine who served our country in one of the world's most dangerous places.
3 Ways You Can Help Right Now
Right now we have requests from Marines and Soldiers throughout Afghanistan. Here are three.
Marines 1st Lt Mike Kuiper needs solar radios to open remote villages to communication and counter the Taliban strategy of isolation and fear.
Army Sergeant Major Mack McDowell needs saffron bulbs and tools to help farmers earn an independent living free of the Taliban. Give here.
Marines in Helmand Province need instant cameras and film to use snapshots as gifts and relationship builders. Give here.
These are items they need right now. Your donation makes a difference. Click below to make a donation that can be used for any request.
Our troops need our help, please email this page to friends and family.
Thank you for your support.
Jim Hake and the Spirit of America team