- What items could be included in school supply kits?
- Must the kits be complete?
- Rather than create kits, we would like to make a donation to ODS. Can we do that?
- What additional supplies could we include?
- How should these kits be packaged?
- What items may NOT be enclosed?
- Must all items be new?
- Do the packages require overseas postage?
- What about customs forms?
- What about packing?
- When is the deadline for sending supplies?
- What other items may I include in the box?
- Are there tax deductions for kit donations?
What items could be included in school supply kits?
Folders or Binders
Pencils with Erasers
A Ruler (with metric markings)
small pencil sharpener
Colored pencils or crayons
A large eraser
Package of notebook paper
Zippered pencil bag
Must the kits be complete?
While complete kits would be ideal, even a partial kit is better than none at all. The children of Afghanistan currently have no school supplies available to them. Most will be attending school for the first time, particularly the girls, and they are grateful for anything they receive.
Rather than create kits, we would like to make a donation to ODS. Can we do that?
What additional supplies could we include?
The teachers in their classrooms rather than individual students could put some supplies to use more efficiently. Some of these items might include construction paper, chalk, and additional packs of paper. While these items could be included in a kit, it isn’t required and could be distributed directly to the schools.
How should these kits be packaged?
You may pack the supplies in a backpack or in a 2 gallon sized zipper seal plastic bag.
Backpacks need not be new; they may be "gently used."
What items may NOT be enclosed?
- Please do not enclose any religious materials (this would include coloring books depicting Biblical stories or holidays.)
- Political messages should also not be included.
- Books in English are not useful for the students.
- Many of today’s cartoons depict characters that show bare midriffs, etc. These would be offensive to the Islamic faith and therefore we ask that you do not send folders or coloring books with these types of pictures.
Must all items be new?
Every child loves the feel of new a pencil or crayon in their hand. While new supplies are ideal, "gently used" items such as backpacks and binders would be welcome. Please remove all names or personal labels. If you cannot remove the name, you may be able to mark it out neatly with permanent marker.
Do the packages require overseas postage?
No. All postage is to an APO in New York where the connection to the Army Post Office is, so you are not paying postage all the way to Afghanistan. We suggest using any regular U.S. mail or Priority mail. If you use any overnight service it will only get to NY quicker, not Afghanistan and would increase the shipping expense.
What about customs forms?
International mail weighing more than 16 oz. requires a customs form. These are available at your local post office or mail service store. Parcel Post (all packages over 4-pounds) require the 2976-A multi-part customs form. It is not necessary to put Afghanistan anywhere on the form because of the use of the APO address. Be SURE to mark the "Gift" box.
What about packing?
Keep in mind our soldiers will be handling these boxes and larger ones become difficult to handle. Try to limit the weight to no more than 25 pounds. Make sure your boxes are sturdy. Use heavy packing tape and cover all corners and wrap the tape in every direction around the box. Do NOT use string on the boxes.
When is the deadline for sending supplies?
Operation Dreamseed is an on going program and will continue until further notice. Approximately 90% of the population is illiterate, and educational supplies are extremely scarce; they need everything we can give! Thank you!
What other items may I include in the box?
- Please fill out our donation form and include it in a box marked "form inside". We want to know about your organization and thank you for your contribution.
- Photos of your group or of the group assembling the packages.
- A thank you note to the soldiers delivering your packages would be a great boost for our servicemen and women!
Are there tax deductions for kit donations?
Yes, you can get a tax deduction for donating school supplies to Operation Dreamseed. Upon receipt of your package, you will be sent a Gift-in Kind Donation Form which states what you donated and gives you the ODS tax donation number. You will determine the value of the items you sent, but we estimate a kit to be valued at about $10.