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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Citizen Participation, Human Services, Military & Veterans Organizations, Veterans, Women, Womens Service Clubs

Mission: Our mission is to give a “hug” (handmade item of warmth or cooling depending on season) to every American serving in the Middle East. We want every deployed troop to know we support their mission to protect our freedoms & to provide freedom to the people of the Middle East. This is our way of saying “Thank you, we appreciate you for serving our country”.

Programs: Prepare care packages for shipment to war zones for active militarypersonnel. Each care package contains food, personal hygiene items,and hand-sewn items.

Community Stories

10 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2 dr-billye

Donor

Rating: 5

I've been supporting the Hugs Project for many years. I love the fact that supporting our troops with care packages is a priority, as well as supporting those troops who have returned home and need help with PTSD (The Hugs Project provides the oxygen for The Patriot Clinics.). Knowing that my donations are being used so wisely makes giving easy!

Previous Stories
2

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Hugs Project is a 100% volunteer organization sending care packages to our beloved troops. No one takes a salary at The Hugs Project, which sends about 100 packages a week and over 5,000 at Christmas. Each box contains "hugs," cooling neckties, which are hand made (over 1 million have been sent so far) and many items which are hard for our troops to get. Our troops deserve the thanks of a grateful nation, and The Hugs Project is trying to show our soldiers just how important they are to our freedom!

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Military Supporter

Client Served

Rating: 5

Love what The Hugs Project does for those who remain in harm's way. Now, they are also working with clinics that treat PTSD and traumatic brain injury with Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy. Good stuff!!

Previous Stories
1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I loved volunteering today! Everyone was so Nice and Caring! Definitely coming back to volunteer more!

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1 Susan406

Board Member

Rating: 5

I was introduced to The Hugs Project by a coworker five years ago. My husband deployed two times since that meeting and THP sent packages to my husband and everyone that was deployed with them. The boxes they packed were loaded to the top. My husband's group was so amazed at how much they put into the care packages. I was so impressed with THP that I came on board and currently serve as their President. THP is filled with amazing volunteers who have so much love for our troops.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have helped The Hugs Project for 6 years, it is a great organization that helps our troops overseas. I started when my brother was deployed and never left, that one box turned into hundreds of boxes for our troops. I love to read the Thank You notes we get back and how much they appreciate the little things we send. Most of the little things we send, we at home take for granted and don't think about being in the middle of nowhere and not having toothpaste or toothbrush. I love working with the other volunteers! We have a great time and able to support our troops!

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I went to pack a box for my brother 4 years ago and never left. Everyone is a volunteer and we support all branches of the military. We support our troops year round averaging 50 a week and 5000 at Christmas.

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DrCoffee

Board Member

Rating: 5

When I served in the Navy during Desert Shield and Storm, care packages were the best part of ANY day. That hasn't changed.

We are making a difference in the quality of American lives and it feels good. Come join us.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've worked with this group for almost 7 years. We're all volunteers. No one takes a salary.

I was a lonely sailor onboard the USS Independence in 1990. I picked an "Any Servicemember" letter out of a stack in the morale office so I know the great feeling support from strangers brings. I want to pass that on.

Our troops let us know that this project affects the way they look at things. One young Marine wrote, "You are rocking our world". Does it get any better?

Well, for me it did...the great feeling I got from my Desert Shield pen pal is one reason I asked her to marry me over 18 years ago. My wife, Karen is the driving force behind The Hugs Project and she's still the love of my life.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Hugs Project brightened the lives of over 6300 soldiers last year with care packages filled with "Hugs" cooling ties, food, candy, socks, personal hygiene items, books, games, powdered drink mixes, coffee, mini-binoculars, solar powered LED flashlights, handknitted neck pillows, etc. When needs arose for foot powder or socks, the troops contacted us for help! We have also been able to supply them with over 120 sewing machines and 2 wheelchairs for them to present to local citizens in their "Hearts and Minds" program which is meant to change opinions of Americans in the hearts and minds of the Middle Eastern citizens.

Review from Guidestar

8

Board Member

Rating: 5

I became acquainted with HUGS about 4 years ago. My aunt (89 at the time) and I purchased materials and made the Cool Tie (neck Hugs) for the troops. We found about about The HUGS Project and started working with them. My husband is also involved. We have helped at Christmas time packing the boxes. We spread the word via the internet and through friends and with our church. HUGS is very well run. A very small percentage of the funds raised is spent on anything other than postage or items for the troops. Volunteers meet 3 times a week and go quietly about their tasks of making cool ties and other items. Everyone is so friendly. Kids from the age of 5 and adults to the age of 85 or so meet and work together doing any job that is needed that day. I feel as though I am contributing greatly to help boost the morale of the troops and their families. People give of themselves whether it is time, money, or articles or just saying prayers. It is a great way to volunteer and the founders, Karen and Ray, are so dedicated to the project and to our troops. The enthusiasm is contagious. My granddaughters (13 and 11) want to go to HUGS to work all of the time. I see that they go as often as possible as I believe that they need to know why people are sacrificing for their freedoms.

Comments ( 1 )

profile

TheHugsLady 03/23/2010

Oh my goodness, don't let Dorothy and Hazel hear you say 85 or so. They both come to volunteer each and every Wed. and they are in their 90's!!! You make a great point though...one is never too young or too old to appreciate and value FREEDOM!! Thanks for your review. Karen

7

Board Member

Rating: 5

My wife & I first learned about The Hugs Project in December of 2008 just before Christmas. We decided to see what it was about and started helping out in the "arcade" packing boxes and making chocolate-covered pretzels to send to the troops. We also spent an early morning at Will Rogers Airport seeing off young soldiers who were going home for Christmas from Ft. Sill. We attended a "members meeting" shortly after that and somehow ended up on the board. Through that we have learned more about "Hugs" and have become more involved. I volunteer weekly (unless out of town) and enjoy it immensely. It is "the least" I can do for those young men and women in harms way protecting my family and our country. God bless them all. Also, I have the pleasure of working along side some of the nicest, most giving people you could ever meet. I can lay my head down at night knowing that I have done something worthwhile and realizing that because of our troops I have a place to "lay my head" at night. Most people are busy these days just trying to get through life. If you find yourself with a little extra money in your pocket, then "Hugs" is a good place to put it, or if you have extra time then "Hugs" is a good place to spend it. You won't regret it.

5 TheHugsLady

Board Member

Rating: 5

This is the best group anyone could ever hope for. Our members are dedicated to supporting Americans far from home. We were the first ones to send cooling ties to the troops serving in the Middle East. We call them "hugs" since they go around the neck and we think all our troops deserve a {{{hug}}}. Cooling ties can reduce body core temps by 5+ degrees helping save our troops from heat stroke deaths. I want to thank every member who has ever made a cooling tie, packed a box, written a letter, made a homemade goodie or prayed for these brave young men and women. Without you, there would be no Hugs Project. Respectfully, Karen Stark Founder/Executive Director