Host a soldier this Christmas -, GA News Weather & Sports

Host a soldier this Christmas

By Taylor Barnhill  - bio | email | Twitter

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Many people will be hosting family and friends over the Christmas holidays, but one local organization, "Starfish Program: Soldiers for Christmas" is trying to find host homes for soldiers who don't have families nearby.

"The response is great. There are so many that want to help, but we need more," says "Starfish" volunteer Carol Hall.

Hundreds of soldiers will be processed at Fort Benning over the holidays, and many will have nowhere to go.

Hall told News Leader Nine, "These are our heroes. They are fighting for our freedom here at home and abroad."

Hall says that's why the local organization is trying to find host families for these soldiers, "To ask families if they would take one or more soldiers into their homes for Christmas and just spend a day with them, have them for dinner, and show them some love."

Hall jokingly refers to herself as a military "brat" as her father served in the armed forces, and she understands what these soldiers are going through, "If it were my son that was somewhere I couldn't be and someone would do this for them, this is the least I can do for another mother's son or daughter."

For Thanksgiving she invited twenty soldiers into her home to celebrate the holiday with her family and she plans to do the same for Christmas, "To be able to share with them how much I appreciate them and the sacrifices they make for me, it means a lot to me that they would do this. I haven't been able to give back as much as I would like to so it's important for me to do this for them."

So the program is encouraging others to do the same.

"We're trying to open that opportunity to the community so they can take in soldiers for Christmas. It's the least we can do for those who sacrifice for us and our freedom," Hall added.

If you would like to host a soldier this holiday season, you can get information on volunteering by e-mailing Dave Stieghan at You need to include your name, e-mail address, phone number and the number of soldiers you would like to come into your home this holiday season.

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