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Giving Troops a Taste of Home in Snyder County

MIDDLEBURG -- Some American troops serving overseas will soon get a taste of home --thanks to a new partnership between two branches of the Red Cross.

The Central Pennsylvania chapter and the branch in Baghdad teamed up to provide support to service members through donations.

While it's common to hear about Red Cross chapters sending donations overseas, this program is different...because it's not a "once and done" donation -- it's a partnership, with donations every month for years to come.

But what do the American Red Cross and potato chips have in common? A mutual love and respect for our troops serving overseas.

Members of the Central Pennsylvania chapter of the Red Cross stopped by Middleswarth Chips in Middleburg to make an announcement -- the chapter is teaming up with the chapter in Baghdad for a project called called "Operation Stronger Together".

"Whether it's a company like Middleswarth sending chips to the deployed troops or a local elementary school doing a pen pal program with them, it's going to be an ongoing collaboration between Central PA and the troops in Iraq," said Jon Glenn of the American Red Cross Armed Forces Service.

Glenn had the idea for the project initially after spending six months at the Red Cross office in Kuwait.

"Being there I saw the need for a taste of home," he said. "Whether it's a care package from your family, something like potato chips from the area you grew up in."

Middleswarth Chips gave the first donation. Audrey Goff's family owns Middleswarth, and her fiancee spent time in Iraq with the United States Air Force...so this project hits home for her.

"We're donating ten cases of three pound chips...half of it being regular and half of it being barbecue," Goff said. "[Her fiance] just thought it was a great thing we are doing and he said the troops love getting stuff from the United States in general, but when a part of their home is sent over there they get really excited."

Hudock Capital of Williamsport is paying to ship the chips in special containers overseas.

 

"Operation Stronger Together" is meant to provide support to service members through donations, and also a way to get the community involved in helping our troops. The plan is for different area businesses to donate products each month.

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