At the July 1 meeting of the Wellsboro Rotary Club, Dawn Pletcher of Wellsboro was awarded the prestigious Paul Harris Fellow award in recognition of her contribution to the community.
The Rotary Club of Wellsboro contributed $1,000 in Pletcher’s name to The Rotary Foundation, an international organization that raises funds to enable Rotarians around the world to advance world understanding, goodwill and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education and the alleviation of poverty.
On Dec. 7, 1941, when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, America was drawn into the WWII. Shortly after that, Pletcher’s uncle enlisted and wound up serving as a bomber pilot in the Pacific. While he was serving, young Pletcher and her mother sent care packages overseas to help bring comfort and remind him of home. Little did she know then that this act and continuing that outreach in years to come would eventually lead her to found Goodies for Our Troops in 2005.
Care packages not only provide some needed supplies and treats, they also bring a little bit of home to men and women serving around the globe. Through local publications, notes and cards from school-age children, and homemade treats, care packages help show the community’s support for the service members and remind them of home. When stationed in isolated and dangerous areas around the world, the care packages help to reminds them why they serve and what they are truly fighting for.
In the words of the mom of a care package recipient, her son “got his care package yesterday he was so happy. Thank you so much. You truly make a difference in this world. Thank you also to all the volunteers and those who donate. You are truly a blessing.”
A U.S. Army Specialist serving in Iraq wrote, “I am currently deployed to Iraq. I received a package full of goodies from all of you, and I wanted to write to tell each and every one of you how appreciative my fellow comrades and myself are for such wonderful people like yourselves. We greatly appreciate the support! God bless.”
This month marks the 16th anniversary of this organization. Goodies is a registered 501c(3) organization that is run entirely on donations. Goodies has no paid employees; all work is done by volunteers and have been since July 2005.
The work that Goodies for Our Troops has done over the years is proof that one individual can has a tremendous impact on the world. In addition to running Goodies for Our Troops, Pletcher also serves as an administrator for the “Things to Do in Twin Tiers” Facebook group to help promote area events, businesses and non-profits.