Yanked from Atrios:
"Sometimes it's so simple. Here's a message from Terry, who used to run the weblog Nitpicker until he got busy doing other things:
As many of you know, I am currently in the apolitical position of Army public affairs specialist in Afghanistan. I only recently arrived, after waiting for 2.5 months at Ft. Riley, Kansas, but that's another issue. I'm writing you all today because I'm going to take many of you up on your offers and rudely ask a favor of those who made no offer.
When I first mentioned on my blog, Nitpicker, that I was going to be deployed, a large number of you asked how you could help me, what I would need for Afghanistan. The truth is, there's not much. However, I just went on my first mission with a civil affairs group and found a way you might be able to help me out.
It seems that the children of Afghanistan want nothing more than they want a pen.
It was explained to me that the villages through which I traveled (near Kandahar, where I'm based) are so poor that a pen is like a scholarship to these children. They desperately want to learn but, without a pen, they simply won't. It's a long story. I won't bore you with it. Trust me, though, when I say that it would be a big deal if even a few of you could put up the call for pens for me. Anyone interested in helping out could either send some directly to me or go to these sites and send them, where you can find them for as cheap as $.89 a dozen.
You can send them to me at this address:
Terry L. Welch
Kandahar Public Affairs Office
APO AE 09355 '
I edited out his site list - he linked to Officemax and Office Depot. Office Depot was making it very difficult to enter a military shipping address, so I went through Office Max. Spend a few bucks - send a few pens.
...Office Max does require a delivery address phone number, but I just put in my own. I put in "Armed Forces" rather than Armed Forces America or Armed Forces Pacific..."