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Group Sends Packages to Soldiers in Need Overseas [VIDEO, AUDIO]

SAUK RAPIDS – It might be hard to imagine, but there are people serving our country who never receive a single card or package during their tour of duty.

As a result, a group called Operation Minnesota Nice has made it their mission to create and send letters and packages to these soldiers, every month.

The roughly 50 volunteers, who meet monthly at the Sauk Rapids VFW, work with army representatives to identify a list of soldiers who don’t receive mail, and then collect items from soldiers’ “wish lists,” and match them with soldiers in need.

Mary Sehnert is the organizer of the Sauk Rapids Chapter of Operation Minnesota Nice. She learned of the group about 4 years through a radio advertisement and “knew [she] had to get involved” after that.

Now, years later, Sehnert says she’s seen remarkable growth in the organization, in both number of volunteers and amount of donated items.

Sehnert says becoming a volunteer with the group is a “long-term commitment,” and volunteers often form lasting relationships with their soldiers.

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The packages contain things from soldiers’ “wish lists,” including food, candy, hygiene products and, especially lately, Christmas items.

Sehnert says one of the most rewarding things is to see volunteers develop lasting relationships with “their” soldiers, even after their service is complete.

Operation Minnesota Nice meets one Tuesday a month at the Sauk Rapids VFW, including tomorrow evening at 6:00 p.m.

If you’d like to learn more about about their work and how you can get involved, visit them online or drop by the Sauk Rapids VFW tomorrow.

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