Halloween is arguably the most unhealthy day of the year. Tonight, children across the country will travel door-to-door collecting approximately 1.9 billion dollars worth of sugar and empty calories. While Halloween is a special, once-a-year celebration, donating most of your child halloween candy to Operation Gratitude can be a way to limit candy consumption while creating a teachable moment about the importance of giving back.
Operation Gratitude is volunteer-based organization that annually sends 100,000 care packages filled with snacks, entertainment items and personal letters of appreciation addressed to US Service Members deployed in hostile regions. It is encouraged to include donations of dental hygiene products along with candy.
Plan, Prepare and Promote the Event
(1) Share this article with friends on Facebook and schedule a convenient neighborhood meeting place time this weekend.
(2) Put candy away until the weekend. Tell your kids you have a big surprise.
(3) Purchase heavy-duty, durable boxes no larger than 24 x 24 x 20 (weight not to exceed 50 lbs. per box)
At the Event
(4) Bring neighborhood kids together and show them this video to introduce Operation Gratitude. Tell them how they can use their Halloween candy to give back.
(5) Have kids write letters of gratitude to the soldiers to include in with the donations.
(5) Have kids divide their candy into keep bags (no more than 25%) and donate bags (at least 75%).
(6) From the donate bags, have kidsseparate chocolate candy and all other candy into separate boxes marked “Chocolate” or “Non-Chocolate.” (Remove all pixy sticks, as they cannot be donated)
(7) Adults should fill out this donation form to include with the boxes of candy. (Remember the box should not exceed fifty pounds).
(8) Send or deliver your candy donations by Mid-November to:
Operation Gratitude/California Army National Guard
17330 Victory Boulevard
Van Nuys, CA 91406
Attn: Rich Hernandez
Phone: 262-674-7281 (262-OPGRAT-1)
If you would like confirmation of delivery on your shipment to us prior to receipt of our acknowledgment letter, please use the tracking system provided by your shipper.
(9) Make sure to reward kids with praise to reinforce the good behavior
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