Susie Beeler is responsible for forming Treats for Our Troops in March 2004, and for facilitating its growth in collaboration with Soroptimists of Manteca. With help of a broad range of volunteers and organizations, 100 theme boxes filled with donated treats and assorted items are sent monthly to local military personnel stationed in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Susie acknowledges every donation. Boxes contain a personal letter with the donor’s name and sustaining donors, plus a blank “thank you” card for the service person to mail to the donor. Susie and her husband, Louie, order and send the boxes, work with store managers to buy at discount, and coordinate volunteers to bake and pack the boxes.
Susie has held offices and given countless hours of service since the 1950s as a member and officer of community organizations including St. Anthony’s Church School Parent-Teacher Group, Atlanta Women’s Club (dedicated to community support and historic preservation of the cemetery at Five Corners), Manteca Historical Society and the San Joaquin Valley Swiss Club. Susie served as Treasurer and President of Soroptimist International of Manteca, and still participates in its community service activities and fundraisers, including the annual Theme Luncheon that she originated.
Treats for Our Troops began with Susie sending four large boxes to Afghanistan for her grandson’s buddies who weren’t receiving anything. She reached out for help, financial and otherwise, from individuals and organizations ranging from California to Washington. Soroptimists embraced Treats for Our Troops and became the non-profit sponsor to receive tax-deductible donations, with Susie as Program Chairperson.