• United States
Contributing Writer

Sites supporting the troops

Apr 01, 20032 mins
Enterprise Applications

* Calling cards and care packages via the Web

As the troops continue to do battle overseas, e-commerce sites are cropping up to let those of us back home contribute to their wellbeing.

The amazing thing is how fast word of mouth is working to get these sites known in the public eye.

For instance, the Red Cross is working through to let people donate calling cards to military personnel so they can call home. The site is very well organized, letting you also choose to donate a card to a specific person. Soldiers can also request a card through the site. And, if you have questions, like I did, there is a customer service number posted that is promptly answered.

Another site,, is run by the Veterans of Foreign Wars. On this site, you have the option of making a donation or sending a phone card to military personnel. The phone cards have already been paid for, so it’s just a matter of putting in a soldier’s name to have them receive the card.  They also let you name a family member to receive a free phone card so they can call their loved ones serving overseas. is a great place for families of soldiers to connect and share their thoughts. It posts information about rallies, lists support groups and has guides for contacting the men and women of the armed forces. According to the site, more than 43,000 visitors stopped by the site last week. I’m sure that number will increase as the weeks go on. One part of the site keeps visitors updated on how care packages are faring – what items are getting through and what is being searched. For instance, hand sanitizer has been a red flag for the mail posts as it contains alcohol., with help from AOL, is collecting donations online to send care packages overseas filled with items military personnel have requested. USOcares also has set up a site that lets visitors send e-mail well wishes to the troops overseas. The great thing is that even if you don’t know someone serving at this time, you can send generic letters of support that get distributed among the troops.

This is just a sampling of how quickly the Web has rallied to support the men and women overseas and to make it possible for people to easily give something to the war effort.