Soldier Care Package Online Donations

  • $0.00
  • Do you have someone from Emporia or with Emporia ties that you would like to send a care package to? Please indicate in the space below the recipient's name and APO address. If you do not wish to send a package to someone specific, your donation will go towards supporting the main project.

Items Needed

This year the Freedom Fest Committee will be collecting items to send to our troops in  Kuwait and Jordan.  We are honored that Diane Tebbetts selected our organization to continue her work after dedicating 17 years to sending gift packages to our service men and women.

If you would like to contribute to our cause, you can make a monetary gift through our online donation option or by dropping off funds to Emporia Main Street (727 Commercial Street). Funds raised will be used to purchase gift items from local businesses and for shipping costs.

We are also asking for items to include in our gift baskets. Please see below for a list of ideas. Items can also be dropped off to Emporia Main Street. Please have all items and donations made by November 26th.

Care Package Items for Soldiers

Small packages arrive more quickly. When packing your items, ship toiletries separate from all food items. When the toiletries and food are packed together, the food tastes like soaps or deodorants, even when heavy zip-loc bags are used to separate the items.

  • Snacks and non-perishable food items, particularly tuna kits, beef jerky, canned fruit, dried fruit, nuts and other healthy snacks
  • Undershirts (white, short sleeve)
  • Socks (bootcut, black, green, or white)
  • Cigarettes, Copenhagen and Skoal
  • Single-use cameras (disposable style)
  • Pre-sweetened flavored beverage mixes
  • Letters of support (letters from you, from children, or from your business, office, school, or other organization in support of our troops)
  • Phone Cards

Food and Snack Items

Pork and pork by-products are not allowed to be shipped to most Middle East combat locations. Please send non-perishable foods only. Single-serving package sizes are preferred; large packages won't stay fresh and are harder to ship. If you can stuff it in your pocket and it's not going to spoil or melt during the summer season, it's a good thing to send!

  • Gum, Lifesavers, Mints (blister pack gum is best because of the intense heat)
  • Fruit: individual serving size cans of fruit, dried fruit
  • Nuts, sunflower seeds, peanuts, trail mix
  • Power bars, protein bars, nutritional bars
  • Beef jerky, beef summer sausage (non-perishable; labeled USDA Beef)
  • Single-serving bags of snacks, crackers, chips, snack mixes
  • Pop Tarts, cereal bars, "milk & cereal" bars, granola bars
  • Ramen Noodles, Cup-O-Noodles serving cups
  • Ravioli and other canned ready-to-eat meals (canned or styrofoam single serving are best)
  • Tuna lunch kits (includes foil pouch of tuna, crackers, and condiments in each single-serving kit)
  • Canned sardines, smoked oysters
  • Torengos® nacho-style chips and canned nacho cheese dip
  • Jalapeño Velveeta® and crackers
  • Taco Bell® Sauce Packets
  • Seasoning salts, flavoring salts

Beverage Items

We cannot ship liquids. However, they do need flavors to add to the drinking water provided to them. Please send pre-sweetened or sugar-free flavoring mixes in small or single-serving packages. During the colder months, hot beverages are in great demand. Please do not send glass jars.

  • Coffee, coffee mixes, tea
  • Hot cocoa mix
  • Lemonade mix, Kool-Aid mix, Tang, Iced Tea mix
  • Gatorade mix (powdered only)
  • Crystal Light (or other brand) "On The Go" flavor packets (these come in a box of several sleeves of flavoring that can be added to a 16-20 oz. water bottle; see photo to the right)
  • Sweetener, sugar and creamer packets for coffee

Recreational Items

  • Frisbee, Nerf Footballs, Hacky Sack, Tennis Balls
  • Deck of cards
  • Hand-held games
  • Gameboy Advance games
  • Movie DVDs (new or used; original only)
  • Music CDs (new or used; original only)
  • Paperback books, novels (new or used)
  • Magazines (new or used, but fairly current)
  • Portable DVD Players
  • Portable CD Players
  • Board Games


Color of underclothing and socks is not as important as 100% cotton. Send fingerless gloves and stocking caps during winter months only.

  • Cotton socks
  • Underwear and T-shirts
  • Military-green cotton boot socks (try military surplus stores)
  • Sunglasses, goggle-style sunglasses, goggles

Communication Items

  • Small cassette player and small cassette tapes
  • Disposable cameras
  • Envelopes, paper, pens
  • Small pads of paper
  • Notebooks (a size they can keep in a pocket and keep dry)
  • Drawing pads
  • Small, blank journals
  • Blank holiday cards (Christmas, Easter, Valentines, Birthday, Anniversary) that they can fill out and send back home to their family and friends

Personal Supply Items

  • Batteries (AA are most requested, then AAA)
  • Cigarettes, chew, cigars
  • Tactical Duct tape: military green, tan or black
  • Electrical tape
  • Super glue
  • 72" Bootlaces (brown or tan preferred)
  • Leatherman All-in-One Tool (see photo)
  • Flashlight with a red lens
  • Quart-size, 1- and 2-gallon ziploc plastic bags
  • Sheets - for those at a base
  • Small travel pillow or inflatable pillows
  • Disposable, instant hand warmers (during the winter months only)

Foot Care Items

Footcare is critical and the demand for quality products is very high. Be sure that all items are in the original, sealed packages.

  • Cotton socks, black, green, or white
  • Boot liners/insoles
  • Odor eaters for boots
  • Lotrimin AF or Tinactin for athletes foot (tubes of ointment or cream, or the bottle of drops; please do not send the aerosol spray type)
  • Medicated Foot Powder, Medicated Foot Swabs
  • Moleskin (for pads on sore feet, you'll find it with Dr. Scholls type things at Wal-Mart or drug stores)

Personal Care Items

Lip balm is in high demand in desert areas. The lipstick-style tubes that you apply directly to your lips are preferred over the "tub" style. Eye drops are to relieve dry eyes; please avoid sending eye drops designed to remove redness as those will increase dryness and irritation caused by sand and storms in a desert climate.

  • Sunblock, Aloe Vera
  • Throat Lozenges
  • Gum, Lifesavers, Mints
  • Eye Drops (to relieve dry eye, not redness)
  • Blistex, Chapstick, Carmex (in stick-tubes rather than tubs)
  • Aspirin, Motrin, Tylenol, Pain Relievers
  • Saline spray/drops for sensitive nasal passages
  • Q-tips
  • Eyeglass wipes
  • Feminine hygiene products for women Soldiers
  • Jock itch spray
  • Laundry soap tablets

Body Wipes and Hand Sanitizers

When the Soldiers are out in the field, facilities for showering and taking care of personal hygiene are infrequent and in many locations non-existent. Portable-sized packages of non-alcohol based baby wipes are in high demand for these Soldiers.

  • Baby wipes for personal hygiene
  • Waterless soap
  • Liquid body wash
  • Liquid hand sanitizers
  • Disposable hand sanitizing wipes

Toiletry Items

Toiletries are not in as high a demand as they once were; however, we do have units at forward operating bases that still need the toiletries listed below:

  • Toothpaste (in hard-side tubes rather than traditional tubes)
  • Toothbrushes
  • Nail clippers
  • Shampoo
  • Deodorant
  • Liquid bodywash soap, liquid anti-bacterial soap (liquid is easier to use than bar soap)
  • Waterless soap
  • Lotion
  • Disposable razors
  • ShaveMan™ Battery Powered Shaver (About $5 at Wal-Mart and other discount stores; see photo below and to the right) Mach3 Razors and replacement blades
  • Kleenex (travel-size packets)