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DHSS Press Release

Rita Landgraf, Secretary
Jill Fredel, Director of Communications
302-255-9047, Pager 302-357-7498

Date: August 29, 2013


NEW CASTLE (Aug. 29, 2013) - The Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP), the State Office of Volunteerism (SOV) and the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) are partnering with Stockings for Soldiers in a public campaign to aid U.S. military members in Afghanistan.

Sept. 11 will mark the 12th anniversary of the terrorist attacks in the United States. To honor the sacrifice of those who died and to pay tribute to those who rose in response to the attacks, Sept. 11 has been declared a National Day of Service and Remembrance.

RSVP, SOV and DHSS will observe the day by partnering with Stockings for Soldiers,

The goal of Stockings for Soldiers is to improve the morale and welfare of members of U.S. armed forces deployed in harm's way. It has been providing personalized holiday stockings filled with treats to U.S. troops since 2003. Last year, Delaware and Stockings for Soldiers sent "touches of home" and personalized messages to 10,000 military members overseas.

"One of the best ways we can remember those whose lives were lost on 9/11 is to do something to serve others," DHSS Secretary Rita Landgraf said. "Stockings for Soldiers takes that volunteerism a step further by sending a piece of home to U.S. military personnel serving around the world as a token of our gratitude."

In support of this effort, DHSS will collect items such as travel-sized toiletries, small candies, socks and razors for the stockings. For a complete list please visit Other ways to donate include financial contributions to cover the cost of postage, letters of appreciation to a soldier or the stockings themselves. The patterns for the stockings are available at

"On the anniversary of 9/11, it is appropriate to think of and thank our military men and women serving in Afghanistan," said Deborah Vandiver, Program Manager for RSVP. "The RSVP drive for Stockings for Soldiers provides a way for us to express support and gratitude for their service."

Donations will be accepted from Sept. 11 to Oct. 4, with collection barrels located across the state. For a list of locations, visit

Any surplus items collected during the drive will benefit other veteran-related organizations and causes in Delaware.

For more information about the drive, go to , or call SVP at 302-255-9882 in New Castle County or 302-856-5815 in Sussex County.

For more information on Stockings for Soldiers please visit

Delaware Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware's citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations.