Send Care Packages
Each military base has a commissary. These items are imported and can cost a considerable amount more given the method of delivery to obtain the items. Consider making care packages with a group of friends or other community members to keep their spirits high. Simple things from home, such as a local newspaper or snack item that is popular are comforting.
Letters of support are important as well. You do not have to have a specific soldier's name in all cases. You can contact a local military support group and they can help coordinate who to address a letter to that is directed for combat troops.
Always thank them for their sacrifices and time away from their own families to protect your own. Time away from loved ones is one of the biggest sacrifices a member of the military can make. Time is part of your life that you cannot get back.
Wish for a Swift Return Home
Soldiers enjoy well-wishes for a safe, fast return home. They dream of being home with their families daily. It is helpful for them to know that you want them home just as much as they wish to be there.
Keep Letters Uplifting in Tone
Refrain from discussing controversy when writing troops. Reminders of the controversy, including topics like black victimization, ethnic stereotyping or unfair treatment of Iraqi civilians as examples, can lead to the generation of negative response should the written letter be read by a superior, or go viral.
The continued support of troops that remain away from their families helps them get through each continued day that they remain overseas. Consider creating a group within your community to gather items to send to the troops as well as a local pen-pal group to write letters of encouragement. These simple things can put a smile on a soldier's face and help them understand that their service is appreciated.