3 Programs to Use During Deployment (That Actually Work!)

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Free photo albums, tuna, and coffee for deployed military-- great resources!There are tons of programs run by nonprofits, businesses, and organizations that are specifically designed to support and help deployed service members and their families during deployment.Today, I’m highlighting the three that John and I found.  I didn’t really use many programs or organizations while John was deployed. In fact, these were the only three that we purposefully sought out and utilized. All three of them were absolutely wonderful and helpful.

If you’re looking for more programs than these three, there are many more online and on Pinterest. These, however, are top-notch programs that I can vouch for.

StarKist’s “Tuna for Soldiers” Program

As you may have gleaned from how much tuna I’ve sent John over the past year, he really, really likes it.  If you haven’t seen them yet, StarKist makes single-serving, ready-to-eat, flavored tuna packets. They’re not very expensive, but it does add up if you’re buying them for a year. I emailed StarKist to see if they would throw some coupons my way. Instead, I received this email:

“StarKist proudly salutes and supports the United States Troops. We appreciate your thinking of us and are gratified to know that our troops enjoy and use our products.We do have a “Tuna for Soldiers” program in which units that request it are sent StarKist Tuna pouch products. Product can only be sent to an APO or FPO Address. Please provide complete APO/FPO address information by email below….Thank you for your interest in StarKist and especially thanks for your bravery and support during these difficult times. Just know that all of us here at StarKist appreciate the efforts of our men and women in uniform.”
Jackie, StarKist Consumer Affairs

I submitted John’s name and address and forgot about it. About two months later, John emailed me and said he had received a giant box of tuna packets from StarKist. I can’t tell you how much we both appreciated this exceptionally generous program. Pretty cool.

[Tweet “About two months later, John emailed me and said he had received a giant box of tuna packets from @starkistcharlie @JoMyGosh”]

Free Photo Book from the USO and RocketLife

Initially, I was skeptical of this program. I was sure the the offer had probably expired or that I wouldn’t be able to run the application on my elderly laptop. I tried it out on the off chance that it might work and created a photo book of all of our engagement photos (which John hadn’t seen yet). The website was easy to navigate and it was just as easy to put the book together. It took about 2-3 weeks for John to receive it. And yes, it was completely, utterly free. Click here to go to the site.

[Tweet “The website was easy to navigate and it was just as easy to put the book together. And yes, it was completely, utterly free. @JoMyGosh”]

Cup of Joe for a Joe

If you have someone serving overseas (it doesn’t need to be in a war-zone), encourage them to sign up for the Green Beans Cafe’s Cup of Joe for a Joe program. The program matches micro-donations from civilians in the States of cups of coffee and bags of coffee (and personal notes of encouragement) to deployed members of the military. John signed up for the program at the beginning of his year and has been treated to quite a few cups of coffee from kind folks during his deployment.

[Tweet “If you have someone serving overseas, encourage them to sign up for @greenbeanscafe program. @JoMyGosh”]

PS. Looking for more ways to save money? Here’s how you can easily save on care packages and still keep the quality.

12 Responses

  1. Could you tell me about how many packs of tuna was in the package your hubby received?

    1. Hi Jennie– I’m sorry I’m just getting your message now! I don’t know how many packets of tuna were in the package. I do know that they were the regular ones (not flavored) and that there were a lot of them. John was genuinely impressed by how much they sent him. If I remember, I think it lasted him at least a month and a half. (And he was eating at least a package every day.)

      1. I am deployed and a friend of mine just got a shipment from Starkist. It contained 4 packs of flavored tuna.

    2. Thank you for sharing. I’m really impressed with the Starkist tuna company. I emailed them and they sent my son a box of tuna. They sent 4 packets of tuna.

  2. i did the tuna thing for my son; i inquired with Starkiss to make sure it was still going on; 2 or 3 weeks later, he got them!

  3. Just an fyi; THANK YOU for all the other ideas and resources.

    “The USO Photo Book Program, Powered by RocketLife, has ended. You can still open, edit, and order your saved projects, as well as create new ones. “

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