Sunday, December 24, 2017

MS: You do not necessarily need to speak to someone to be able to communicate something towards them

AMH2020 student
 “We need more kindness, more compassion, more joy, more laughter. I definitely want to contribute to that.” – Ellen DeGeneres

            For my second service project, I completed another box to send to troops serving in Afghanistan. After working on completing and sending the first box, I realized the small impact it had quickly made on my life. I was much more interested in knowing about how these boxes impact the servicemen and women and what kind of items they are specifically in need of. Being a part of a simple project where I am able to send boxes to those who put their life on the line for the safety of my friends and family every day is something that is much more than a small token of my appreciation. While I wish I could contribute more, the best thing I can do for them to show my appreciation is to do what I am able to which is to send them this box to serve as a symbol of my sincere gratitude.
            In this box, I wanted to send similar items to my first box but not exact although each item has the same meaning behind it. For snacks, I included Candy, Chips, Cheese Crackers, Chewy Granola Bars, Freeze Dried Fruit, and Trail Mix. I know that snacks seem as a simple thing that we may take for granted but I feel that for troops in Afghanistan, these supplies may not be as readily available as we would expect them to be for us. In addition to the various snacks, I included activities to put a small smile on their faces and maybe cause a welcome distraction: pens and a Notebook, Playing Cards, and a Wheel of Fortune Word Seek book. Like the last box, the most important item in there to me was a handwritten thank you note that truly expressed my sincere thanks and appreciation for all that the servicemen and women do.
            One of the reasons this project means so much to me is because my grandmother created a similar concept to send my grandfather when he was serving in the Marines in the late 1960’s/early 1970’s. Herself and her neighbors in Brooklyn, New York used to send my grandfather a small box of essentials while he was domestically serving. My Grandpa Allen, to this day constantly says that the boxes were what he looked forward to receiving and that people, some neighbors he didn’t even know cared so much about his happiness and his safety that he was truly honored and beyond appreciative of the small effort that people made specifically for him. Knowing someone who has personally served and received something like this that makes a difference in their life means more to me than I will ever be able to describe. Although I do not personally know many currently serving servicemen and women today and get a physical opportunity to say thank you, I feel that having the ability and means to put together and send these boxes to troops in Afghanistan allows me to contribute in a small manner that truly goes a long way.
            This project connects to my core values because of the fact that giving back to others and doing charity and volunteer work has always been an important aspect of my life. Additionally, being a part of a society and a group where coming together to do something strong for the community allows me to understand and connect to the service project on a deeper level. As a communications major, my eventual career will be talking to people and communicating with them in all different types of ways. I feel that I am communicating my gratitude to the servicemen and women by sending this box. To me, this is just a small way to contribute my appreciating and it ties into the communication skills that I learn each day. You do not necessarily need to speak to someone to be able to communicate something towards them. It takes the strength and motivation behind your communication to convey the message that you want sent across whether it is through symbols or physical speaking.
            I hope that my box brings happiness and a sense of joy to those troops serving in Afghanistan. My simplistic goal of putting this box together is to express my sincere gratitude and show joy for all those who have exemplified extreme bravery and are serving our country. I hope to have that impact on a servicemen or women’s life that I contributed to the small bit of happiness they may have experienced that day. I love the concept of this project as it is a simple way to express our appreciation in just a small way and I hope that by me continuing on with it because I enjoy it, I can inspire others to begin to do the same. To know from a personal experience story like my grandfathers, this little bit goes a long way whether we are aware of it or not. To get the community involved in an amazing project like this could lead to so many stepping stones for great success. I hope to be a part of this project and its incredible concept for many years to come.