WRAL SmartShopper

WRAL SmartShopper

Thursday thoughts: Donating expired coupons and more to our troops

Posted October 6, 2011


Did you know that you can donate your expired coupons to our U.S. military who are stationed overseas and have access to a commissary? They can actually use our expired coupons for up to 6 months after they have expired! Here's a new resource for donating your coupons that is much easier than those we have recommended in the past! We also have a great way to donate some of your overstock to help our military this holiday season. 


Recently, Nancy, here on the blog recommended a site new to me, It offers a very easy way to donate your expired (and in-date) coupons. There’s no sorting or counting needed. You simply cut them out of the inserts, stick them in an envelope and mail them to CoupsForTroops in Winnabow, NC. The organization then mails them to specific families who are stationed overseas. You also have the option to send them directly to a family through their direct mail program.

This is such an easy way to give back for all the hard work these men and women do for us everyday. The families who move overseas with their military spouses are so appreciative of these coupons because coupons are just not available in places like Germany, England, Japan and Guam.

This is also a wonderful project for scout troops, business groups, church groups, mom's groups and any group you belong to. Each time your group meets (or about once a month for businesses), bring your expired coupons and have a different person mail them each month. Depending on the size of the group, you may only be responsible for mailing the coupons out once a year or less.They also encourage those donating coupons to include a thank you note to our military as well.

Click HERE for more information on Coups For Troops.

SECU Supports the Troops Donation Project

If you are looking for a local way to support our troops with donations of products they may need, here’s an easy way to donate. The SECU branches are collecting donations through October 31 to send to the troops. Thanks to Linda for sending me the list of items needed!

Here are the details:

2011 Wish List 2011 for "SECU Supports the Troops!"

All donations should be NEW and must be able to fit in a 10" x 5" box. We need travel size products only to maximize the number of items we can include! Please note: We cannot send any items in pressurized (aerosol) cans or glass containers.

Food Items:
Snacks (individual packages of crackers, cookies, trail mix, protein bars, dried fruit, nuts, beef jerky, hard candy - no chocolate that can melt)
Powered drink mixes (small, individually sealed packages)

Bar soap
toothbrushes (individual packages)
Dental floss
Disposable razors (small packs
Moist towelettes
Sunscreen (SPF 50)
Insect repellent wipes with Deet

Medicine/First Aid
Antacids (small packages)
Tylenol/Advil/Aleve (small bottles/packages)

Socks - above the ankle/crew (white or black)

Decks of cards
Travel games (small handheld size only)
Puzzle books (small handheld size only)
Post card size stationery/pens/pencils (no full-size notebooks or paper)

Bring all donations to a local SECU branch by October 31st and thank you for helping to support the troops!

If you know of other drop off locations for donating items to the troops, please post them in the comments section below.  Together we can all say thanks to our troops and their families overseas!


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  • tinapowell Oct 9, 2011

    I work for SECU in Roanoke Rapids where the initiative for the troops actually started. Faye, is there anyway you could post the SECU collection initiative on it's on post. I almost didn't click on this one because when I originally looked at sending the coupons to the military I realized how time consuming it is. I work full time and also take classes almost full time so it was not an option for me. Thanks for posting the alternative site which will be so much more time effective. I will encourage everyone at our local branch to donate their expired coupons and we'll send them in. Thanks again!

  • stephlw Oct 8, 2011

    My neighbor also told me about the American Legion Ladies Auxiliary that collects and give coupons to the troops. She takes my extra and expired coupons to give to the military.

  • Nancy Oct 7, 2011

    Stephanie - you're my stateside HERO for setting up CoupsForTroops!!!! Come October 12th, I'll have a bunch to ship to you from our two swaps I attend. The girls really hang on to expireds and bring them in monthly. You are awesome and I thank you so very, very much!!

  • whatwuzithinking Oct 7, 2011

    Thanks for sharing. We always check at dentist or pediatrician's office when we go for "freebies" they have out and will ask for an extra one if they have plenty left to set aside for things like this.

  • Faye Prosser - Smart Shopper Oct 6, 2011

    Thank YOU, Stephanie!! Such a wonderful thing you are doing!!

    It's great to read how many of you are already donating and how many of you are looking for ways to get together a group to donate!

  • nceducator79 Oct 6, 2011

    This is pretty cool...I never even knew they did this. I'm going to try to start a little club at my school for this with the FACS (Home Ec) teacher. She coupons for her program and I think she tosses the extras she has. It would be a great service project for my students.

  • momssmallvictories Oct 6, 2011

    I got an email from my direct mail family today, she works at a school so can share with lots of families....score cause i have collected a lot from friends and family! I am using a coupon swap I started with friends as opportunity to collect expired coupons for this program. Just asking people to save their expired coupons for me to send. Yay steph, the word is out for your cause in Raleigh, Faye has lots of fans, including me!!!! Shes changed the way we shop and saved us oodles!

  • steph3 Oct 6, 2011

    Thank you, Faye and Nancy! I am thrilled to get this kind of exposure for our cause. Please spread the word to all of your couponing friends...."don't throw away your expired coupons!"

    Coups For Troops

  • couponlover89 Oct 6, 2011

    Nancy - 21, huh? I only have a year on him!! You might need to bring him to a swap when he comes home! :) Haha! Hope he liked all those snack coupons we were sending your way last time!

  • JaredsMom Oct 6, 2011

    Thanks for posting the SECU Project. Very worthwhile and I can't wait to get stuff to drop by my local branch.

    And Nancy, I agree with Faye, you have a heart of gold! Thanks for all you share with us and for what you do for your adopted soldier!