Local & State Voices

Too much Halloween candy? Donate it.

Too much Halloween candy? Donate it.
Too much Halloween candy? Donate it. Courtesy of the Star-Telegram

Halloween is a holiday in which American children spend the evening gathering candy from their neighbors. Most kids will end up obtaining a substantial amount of candy, and then attempt to eat as much as they can, before having a tummy ache.

Growing up, my siblings and I would always dump our candy out on the living room floor when we got home. My brother and I sorted and counted every piece, trading what we didn’t want for things that seemed more appealing. My brother wasn’t a huge fan of chocolate, and I loved it. Every year I’d trade him all my sugary candy like Smarties and Sweet Tarts for all his chocolates, especially Reese’s. There were a few years where the negotiations got so heated that our mom had to step in and help us figure it out. However, the candy never lasted long. Every year, our mom took the remaining candy after two days and donated it to Operation Gratitude.

Operation Gratitude is an organization that accepts donations all throughout the year to make care packages for deployed soldiers and first responders. During the Halloween season, Operation Gratitude accepts candy collected by little trick-or-treaters. Just last year, Operation Gratitude received 533,891 pounds of candy. That’s a lot of fun-size Kit-Kats!

Donating to Operation Gratitude is a great way to stop yourself from consuming a little too much sugar, while doing something great for your community. The donation process is very easy. The organization accepts any candy (except Pixie Sticks), and it doesn’t need to be sorted. Just ship a box of the sweet treats to Operation Gratitude’s facility in California, or you can drop some off to Webb Orthodontics in South Park. If you wish to include any letter or hand-written note, make sure it’s packaged separate from the candy in an envelope.

If you’re unwilling to part with your sweet treats, there are other ways to get involved. Give a monetary donation to the company that will help in the process of delivering the candy, or be a volunteer for Operation Gratitude. You also can help sort, package, and deliver the candy to the soldiers and first responders. For more information, check out Operation Gratitude’s website.

Mary Catherine Jeffries is a senior at Charlotte Country Day School.