We appreciate the feedback on the Care Package for female troops we’ve been seeing in the blogosphere. Jessica Valenti of Feministing and Kate Harding of Salon.com in particular have offered critiques of the program. Valenti even quotes directly from our own video of the event. Additional coverage in Stars & Stripes yielded a strong editorial response.
This is a good thing.
You see, we’ve been hearing from women service members since our Care Package program - Operation USO Care Package - began (that was about 2 million Care Packages ago). We listened carefully, and decided to try to create a package that answered their requests. The Care Package for Female Troops in its current version reflects what women told us they would like to have while serving overseas. Maybe we got it wrong, or maybe this is one of those good deeds that does not go unpunished. Either way, we don’t intend to guess. We routinely survey all Care Package recipients to find out what the troops actually want – not what we think they should have. We have and will continue to make adjustments to the program.
We are about to offer one more variation on a theme. Our Family Care Package will be sent to families of deployed troops. We do a great deal for men and women who are deployed, and we realized we need to focus on helping out those they leave behind. There will be a hiccup or two, but we will get it right. We cannot simply do nothing at all.
More from the USO
May 25, 2017
NBC's 'This Is Us' Cast Visits Service Members and Military Families on USO Tour at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst
It was a morning to remember. A group of stars from NBC’s “This Is Us” – Mandy Moore, Milo Ventimiglia, Chrissy Metz, Justin Hartley, Susan Kelechi Watson and Chris Sullivan – spent a morning visiting service members and their families at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst as part of a USO entertainment tour.
May 24, 2017
After Struggling to Find His Place in the World, Marine Finds Two Families – and His Place in Both
Deron Johnson didn't plan on joining the military, but he ended up a Marine. He also didn't anticipate becoming a fraternity brother at Texas A&M, but then came Theta Chi and its history of supporting the military - and the USO.
May 15, 2017
USO Operation Birthday Cake Brings the Party to Service Members in Japan
When Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Jeffrey Lee received an urgent call to head to his work station one morning, he thought there was something seriously wrong, but there was no emergency. Instead, he walked into his own surprise birthday celebration, courtesy of his wife, USO Yokosuka and the Operation Birthday Cake Program.