Packaged With Care

Care Packages Assembled Through Local Blue Star Mothers

Area residents gathered Saturday at the Fluvanna Community Church to fill postage boxes with items, including food and personal care items, to be sent to loved ones who serve in the military and can’t be home for the holidays. P-J photos by Jordan W. Patterson

Inside the Fluvanna Community Church on Saturday, a line began to form for people looking to send a care package to loved ones serving in the military who can’t make it home for the holidays.

Blue Star Mothers WNY Chapter 4 hosted its annual Christmas box wrapping event where the group donates postal boxes to community members to send items to members of the military. The Blue Star Mothers began as mothers of military servicemen and women who came together during World War II to support their children.

The local chapter of the nonprofit began about 10 years ago and continue to support the military and veterans.

Kathie Collver, vice president of Blue Star Mothers WNY Chapter 4, was optimistic that his years event would come close to last year amount of boxes that were given out.

“We do this every year to give Christmas care packages to those who are not going to be home for Christmas this year,” Collver said.

Boxes are filled Saturday at the church. The event was hosted by the local chapter of Blue Star Mothers, a nonprofit group that provides support to mothers with family in the military.

Collver said 1,068 boxes were shipped over seas to troops throughout last year. She said Blue Star Mothers was hopeful to hit 850 boxes during this Christmas alone. The food, hygiene products and various items were donated from the community.

The postal boxes were purchased by Blue Star Mothers and then given to those in line as they entered the church.

“All of the donations come from the community and all of the monetary support comes from the community,” Collver said.

The boxes the Blue Star Mothers used to package supplies cost over $17 each. The money for the boxes was raised through donations and fundraisers. The main process for preparing for the event began at the end of October. Collver said the local chapter waits until the holiday season begins because the event is supposed to coincide with the holiday spirit. The event is always held the first Saturday of December.

Collver remembered the first year the local chapter began when the organization only sent out 35 boxes.

A pile of boxes wait to be filled.

“We’ve grown,” Collver said. “Its become a community event, it’s not just about (the Blue Star Mothers) by any means.”

Collver has had three children who have served in the military and is the reason she joined the Blue Star Mothers. Collver expressed her passion for her continued support for current troops and veterans.

“This makes such a huge difference to these guys and gals,” Collver said.

Collver pointed to the “thank you” notes that were posted at the entrance from families of troops and troops themselves.

“They truly appreciate this,” she said. “They truly appreciate knowing that they’ve been remembered (and) that they’re being appreciated