Military spouses were given boxes full of goodies, thanks to the non-profit Christian organization, Support Military Spouses. In honor of Military Spouse Appreciation Day, the organization, with the support of other businesses and donations, handed out over 50 shoeboxes to anxiously awaiting spouses, May 11.

According to the organization’s website, Shoeboxes For Military Spouses is the nation’s only program of its kind for shoebox gifts for military spouses and is the flagship of Support Military Spouses.

“It is our vision and goal to assemble, collect, and distribute shoeboxes filled with gifts that are pampering and encouraging in nature to every U.S. military wife or husband whose spouse is active duty,” said the website.

Support Military Spouses joined Chick-fil-A, Penske Truck Rental, Fort Bragg Federal Credit Union, Leith Automall, Fayetteville-Cumberland County Chamber of Commerce, and Beasley Broadcast Group as well as other private sponsors in pampering Fort Bragg’s military spouses. The shoeboxes included pocket-sized Bibles, books of inspiration, lip gloss/balm, shower sponges, bath lotions and gel, body spray, notepads, journals, stationery, stamps and jewelry. Some were even given hand-knitted headbands. Even though the majority of the spouses were wives, the husbands of servicemembers were not forgotten. Their boxes included pocket-sized Bibles, books of inspiration, coffee samples, non-breakable mug, nail clippers, shower gel, a deck of cards, gum, hard candy, notepads and pens.

“The best part was the thank you letters,” explained Nancy Clark. “Especially since they were from other military spouses.”

“I really enjoyed the scripture cards,” Jackie Burden added.

Co-founders of Support Military Spouses, Dr. (Pastor) Steven Rumley, a military veteran, and his wife, Diane, had always wanted to help out and give back to the military community, but Diane credits God for showing her to the spouses of the military.

“He really showed me the heroes behind the heroes,” she said. “Our goal is to ensure that every military spouse is given a shoebox, and there’s a lot of them out there.”

“A friend told me about this amazing opportunity,” explained military spouse, Mallory Velmer.

“I’d like to just say thank you to everyone who had a hand in this and took the time to put these together for us,” added Amanda Lovell.

“It’s for you,” Diane said smiling after being thanked. “We just get the opportunity to say thank you, to you.”