Operation Gratitude, volunteers assemble nearly 4,000 care packages for JBSA-Lackland recruit graduates

Nonprofit organization sends thousands of care packages a year to military and frontline responders

SAN ANTONIO – The nonprofit organization Operation Gratitude brought together volunteers to assemble care packages for JBSA-Lackland recruit graduates at the Boeing Center Tech Port Arena on Tuesday morning.

“The packages that we are packing today will go to our newest air and space force graduates right here in San Antonio at Lackland Air Force Base and that’s the beautiful thing about this particular event is the volunteers that are packing here today get to see the work that they are doing benefit those in their local communities,” said Vicki Johnson, National Volunteer Director of Operation Gratitude.

Volunteers like Tammy Caldwell assembled about 4,000 care packages from snacks, hygiene items and handwritten letters.

“It was really important for me to find a way to be able to say thank you,” Caldwell said.

The nonprofit sends thousands of handwritten letters of appreciation, love and support to military and frontline responders.

Over the course of 20 years, the organization has distributed close to 4 million care packages.

“They are surprised and so thankful that people care about them,” Johnson said.

The organization sends up to 200,000 care packages per year and wants to continue growing. It also has different volunteer opportunities throughout the year.

“Every is welcomed. Everybody feels welcomed,” Caldwell said.

About the Authors:

Tiffany Huertas is a reporter for KSAT 12 known for her in-depth storytelling and her involvement with the community.