By Linda Scherer
Collecting quilts and shoes for the children in Afghanistan to help them keep warm during their cold winters is one of the latest efforts of the ladies auxiliary of the Lake Mary VFW Post 9232.
The request for the need to provide the Afghanistan children with these items came from Captain Maureen Genty-Sevilla, who is a physician’s assistant at a clinic in Afghanistan, where she has been stationed since May. There, she is able to see first-hand, the needs of the children living in the area.
She wrote to her parents, Dick and Joan Genty of Winsted, in an e-mail, “The population is so poor, and they live in mud huts. The winters are very cold, even here in the desert, so shoes and blankets are essential. Before the age of 5 years old, 20 to 30 percent of the children die due to curable illness.”
Joan, Sevilla’s mother, is a member of the Lake Mary VFW auxiliary, and she spread the word to its members. It didn’t take long for a group of ladies to collect two large boxes of quilts and shoes and send them off.
However, the group has found that getting people to donate quilts and shoes has been easy, but coming up with the money needed for the postage to send the items to Afghanistan has been very expensive.
Just to send one box of quilts cost the auxiliary about $50. The auxiliary has put a hold on the quilt and shoe collection until they are able to come up with more money for the postage needed to send them.
The Lake Mary VFW is very active in many causes
The Lake Mary VFW volunteeers an average of 115 hours each month at the local nursing home. At Christmas time, they support the 10 veterans homes in Minnesota and supply gifts for McLeod County Social Services.
The auxiliary carries cancer insurance for all members and donates annually to the cancer aid and research fund.
Anyone interested in joining should contact Quartermaster Dave Gailey at (320) 485-4306 for VFW Post information, and Margie Heimerl at (320) 238-2363 for any questions about the ladies auxiliary.