You probably never thought that riffling through your closets, attics and packed away boxes at home could -- in a small way -- strengthen international relations.
The Yellow Ribbon Support Group is asking people to take on the task in hopes of unearthing old Beanie Babies that will be added to the care packages it's been assembling for nearly a decade.
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Troops on foreign shores give the stuffed animals to local children to promote goodwill, and the Palatine-based nonprofit organization recently ran out.
Led by Palatine residents Pat and Mac McCoy, Yellow Ribbon has delivered 25,178 boxes to date. The group surpassed its latest milestone after a care package campaign at St. Hubert's earlier this month.
The McCoys first started sending care packages to their Marine son and his 12-man special forces team.
Now, a loyal following of volunteers meets a few times a month to put the packages together. They're then distributed at events around the suburbs to people willing to take them to the post office and pay for shipping.
Anyone wishing to donate Beanie Babies can drop them off from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays in Room 263 of Palatine village hall, 200 E. Wood St. Donations are tax deductible.
For more information, visit yellowribbonsg.org.