First Friday: Helping the Children

Launching "Operation Angel Wings"

On Dec. 4, head out for First Friday in Ardmore, Haverford or Bryn Mawr and become part of "Operation Angel Wings," a humanitarian effort to collect clothing, toys and other items for the children of war torn Afghanistan -- just in time for the holidays.

The idea for "Operation Angel Wings" was born when Lt. Col. Kenneth Marx, an Army Reserve Battalion Surgeon currently serving in Afghanistan's war zone, emailed the people at First Friday for a favor. He wanted to see if anyone with a "large heart" could help him (and other people that he's serving with) improve the conditions of life for Afghans suffering through the middle of the war.

"One of the hardest parts of doing a combat tour is seeing impoverished children and having nothing to give them," Marx said. "They don't even have the basic necessities  -- clothing, sweaters, scarves, gloves, socks -- let alone toys and stuffed animals to play with."

So Marx and the others have requested donations. They are asking specifically for winter clothes, towels, small toys and stuffed animals (like matchbox cars and Beanie Babies) and any other lightweight, easy to transport items that can be sent to Afghanistan and given to the children while the soldiers are doing their patrols. Also, they have requested reading glasses for older Afghans.

Used donation items are also welcome, as long as they are clean and in good condition.

It's not often that such efforts are made to help others in need, so join the cause this holiday season.

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