In the past 12 years, Friends of Coffey Health System has collected care package items for American soldiers and canine units overseas. While the COVID pandemic has forced changes in the program—the CHS volunteers have found a way to keep it going.“Again this year, we will focus on our support for the US War Dogs in New Jersey,” said coordinator Linda Booth. “This is an organization we have partnered with for several years to send care packages to overseas dog teams. Approximately 2,700 canine teams are serving to detect danger and protect people. 100 percent of donations go to fulfilling the wish list of the handlers and dogs.”To kick-start the effort, CHS employees are dedicating “Jeanerosity Fridays” throughout October, with employees contributing (at least) one dollar for the privilege of wearing jeans to work on Fridays. With tremendous community support, last year’s collection raised $4,583 to support 60 dog teams in the Middle East, Africa, and Southeast Asia. US War Dogs is led by former handlers who ensure that care packages meet the dogs’ unique needs, such as training leashes, leather muzzles, goggles, and booties. They also include dog toys and special items for the trainers and handlers.“As a former US Marine Corps dog handler, I remember fondly receiving gear and care packages from US War Dogs,” writes Chris Willingham, who now serves as the organization’s president. “What made them so special was the care taken to make sure the gear sent was of the highest quality and met our most urgent needs.”Individuals and organizations are welcome to join the Support the Troops project. A monetary donation can be made by October 30 in care of Friends of Coffey Health System, 801 N. 4th, Burlington, KS, 66839. Friends of CHS will gladly collect cards and letters from area students to send to the soldiers in appreciation for their sacrifice. Educators are encouraged to call Linda Booth at (620) 364-8015 or the Coffey County Hospital Gift Shop at (620) 364-2121 Ext. 4267.