Courageous Hearts: Packages from Home

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Packages from Home send care packages to military members serving overseas. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Packages from Home send care packages to military members serving overseas. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Each box costs right around $75 to put together. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Each box costs right around $75 to put together. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Over the past year, Packages from Home has moved into a large Glendale warehouse to facilitate all of the programs. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Over the past year, Packages from Home has moved into a large Glendale warehouse to facilitate all of the programs. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Thank-you letters from service members now serve as wallpaper because there are so many. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Thank-you letters from service members now serve as wallpaper because there are so many. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
GLENDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

During the month of February, CBS 5 is partnering with Fry's Food Stores to Pay It Forward to our military families and wounded warriors.

Wake up Arizona's Preston Phillips introduces us to a Valley nonprofit that outfits our deployed military with packages from home to let them know they're never forgotten.

"It definitely puts a huge smile on our faces and gives the strength and will to do our job," said Sarah Perry with Packages from Home as she read to us one of the hundreds of letters the nonprofit has received from troops overseas.

The letters now serve as wallpaper because there are so many.

"When they give us these thank yous, it just comes full circle. It just means the world to us," said Perry.

At Packages from Home, volunteers spend countless hours packing and shipping more than 500 care packages a month to our deployed military heroes.

Their efforts are only possible because of sponsors and generous donations from people like you.

"It's $17.35 to send a single package, that doesn't even include all of the great items inside, so when we first started in 2004, it was only $7.20," said Perry.

In addition to the care packages for troops, Packages from Home has rolled out care packages for the 3,000 some odd deployed canines.

Each box costs right around $75 to put together.

"This stuff is not provided over there. We've been told by one of our veterinary detachments, that 90 percent of the stuff that we send over there is not provided to the K-9 dogs, so we really try to do right by them," said volunteer Aaron Morrison.

Over the past year, Packages from Home has moved into a large Glendale warehouse to facilitate all of the programs.                

Veteran Richard Ratajczak has been volunteering at the nonprofit now for more than 5 years.

Ratajczak says he does it because he knows how much it means to our brave men and women receiving them.

"When you see one of those letters come back and you know that's one of the troops you've helped out, how does that make you feel?" asked Phillips.

"Some of the citations we've gotten and everything really makes your heart pound a little bit, you know," said Ratajczak.

This is a month-long event happening at Fry's Food Stores all over the Valley.

So far you've helped us raise more than $89,000 of our $200,000 goal.

The program goes until the end of February.

You can donate at any Fry's Food Store in Arizona.

100 percent of proceeds go to the vets and their families.

Copyright 2017 KPHO (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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