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Project Write2Them helps family, friends keep in touch with military recruits

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Posted at 9:13 AM, Jun 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-30 09:13:27-04

When a military recruit goes off to basic training, they are essentially disconnected from the world. No email, no Internet, no social media. The only way they can connect to family and friends is through letters.

Project Write2Them has found a way to keep military recruits in touch with their families in today's tech-driven world.  

Helen Simmons and her husband Bob started Write2Them when their son went off to train at an Air Force base in San Antonio, TX.

"We started thinking about how we could make it easier to stay in touch and get those letters of support to him during the eight weeks he would be in basic training," Simmons said.  And that's how Project Write2Them was born.

The way it works is a parent or spouse sets up an account for their military recruit and adds friends and family to the account (there is a small fee to use the service).  They can send as many emails and photos to the trainee as they want. Write2Them prints out all the emails and sends them to wherever the recruit is stationed.

The mail is sent out every morning, Monday through Saturday.  

And account holders can write to trainees who aren't getting much mail. Simmons says often loved ones will tell their parents about comrades whose names are not being called often at Mail Call. Write2Them will also set up an account for a trainee and the volunteers or the recruiter will send them mail. Simmons says they rely on donations for that part of the program.

Sally McMahan says she started using Write2Them when her son Patrick started at the U.S. Naval Academy in 2014. She now has a second son, Jack, who is starting at the USNA this year.

"I have 5 children and a large extended family who were very close with my son who was about to head of to the Naval Academy," said McMahan. "This service allowed 35 people to send him mail weekly, sometimes daily! The constant supply of letters kept our son motivated and encouraged throughout a grueling Plebe summer."

For more information about Project Write2Them and how to sign up, check out their website.

Follow Megan Knight on Twitter @Knightfromabc2 and Facebook @MeganKnightNews.

 

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