Operation Bandana has distributed 276,435 bandanas as of March 28, 2017         
 

FAQs

What is the best way to get started in promoting Operation Bandanas?

  • The DVD kit is the best promotional tool for sharing the vision and purpose of our ministry.  The DVD has six different short clips (most 5 minutes or less) to choose from to show to your congregation; a sample bandana packaged the way we send them; and three brochures. If you only have one opportunity for a video, we recommend showing the OpBandanas Music Video to your church congregation. This is a good overview for seeing our troops with the bandanas and see the volunteers who help prepare them for mailing. The visual always stirs hearts to give. We ask a $5.00 donation when ordering the kit.
  • More Brochures may be ordered separately with or without the DVD kit.  The charge is only $5.00 per 100 brochures.  The brochures can also be copied from the pdf on the website if you have access to a color copier.  

 What is the cost per bandana?

  • The cost of the bandana, printing and packaging is approximately $5.00 per bandana.
  • Here is an idea of the expenses and the nuts and bolts of getting the bandanas into the hands of our troops. It is a finely tuned operation that could not exist without donors and volunteers:
    • (1) OpBan purchases the fabric or purchases blank bandanas if a supplier carries the pattern. Right now, we have to purchase the multicam fabric by the bolt with a minimum of 1500 yards ordered, which is quite costly.
    • (2) The fabric or blanks are shipped to the manufacturer who then cuts, hems, and prints whatever quantity we are able to order (based on donations) to meet a request(s).
    • (3) Upon completion, the manufacturer ships the prepared bandanas to OpBan.
    • (4) OpBan also prints a card (two-sided) that accompanies each bandana that is then packaged in a sandwich sized baggie.
    • (5) Once received, volunteers fold, package, and pray over the bandanas.
    • (6) The bandanas are then mailed to those requesting them, primarily chaplains, who want to distribute them to their Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines. There is no expense to our chaplains and servicemen and women as the bandanas are given as GIFTS of love, appreciation, and spiritual encouragement. They have already “paid” for them with their service and sacrifice.
    • (7)  Shipping and handling costs are a large expense in addition to the bandana itself, the insert card, and the baggies that are purchased. .
  • Spouses of our servicemen and women requesting the bandanas do not pay for the bandanas.  That is a way that we can support them by providing this gift to their loved one.
  • We are not in the business of selling the bandanas, but if you want to distribute them yourself, we can have them sent to you.

Do I send donations to you to distribute the bandanas or can my church support a particular soldier from our own congregation and have the bandanas mailed back to us to distribute?

Churches can do one of three things:

1.  Receive and then send an offering or donations for OpBan to send to those on our list.

2.  Send donations and request the bandanas to be mailed back to you to distribute.

  • Please enclose a note to let us know that you want the bandanas (however many your donation will provide) mailed to you to distribute.  Enclose address of where to mail.
  • Also on the note, please let us know what branch of service they will be going to so that we will know what pattern to send…Army (ACU or Multicam), Navy (solid navy blue), Marine (MarPat digital), or Air Force (ACU or Multicam).  There are two Army patterns, the ACU (Army Combat Uniform) and the Multicam pattern.  Pictures of the different patterns are on the Donating to Operation Bandanas page under Downloads.
  • There is a shipping and handling charge to mail them to you.  That can be subtracted from your donation or you can send extra for the s&h.  The amount of s&h is based on how many (weight) bandanas and where they are being mailed to.

3.  Send offering/donations to Operation Bandanas, request the bandanas be mailed to you when ordered to do the hands on folding and packaging, then mail them to OpBan to add to those that are being distributed. You would need to send them to a street address, not the PO Box. The address will be provided to you.

This is for churches who do not have anyone in particular that they can send the bandanas to, but want to volunteer to package them.  We have many requests for the bandanas, so it is very helpful when we receive the bandanas back ready to mail to our troops waiting on them.

  • If you choose this option, we do ask that when received, you plan to have them ready to send back to us within two weeks.  That should give you time to ask for volunteers to meet together.

Can we get the cards also to enclose with the bandanas that we send?

Yes, you can order the cards that we enclose with each bandana.

  • They are 5 cents per card plus shipping and handling. ($5.00 for 100)
  • You can add a personal note on the back of each card or attach a label printed with something like…”Lovingly provided to you by…Church…” “Thank you for your service…” , etc.
  • Children can also get involved with this by drawing pictures on the back of the card or writing notes.  All ages can participate.
  • Churches who have purchased the bandanas can add their own notes in addition to the OpBan card.

Can I request just one bandana to send to a particular loved one or friend?

  • We ask that you request no less than ten bandanas at a time. It is always good when ordering to consider the battle buddies of the one you want to send a bandana to and not just the one soldier.
  • The overall purpose of our ministry is to receive donations from individuals, churches and organizations to provide Psalm 91 bandanas to as many of our troops as possible, to whole units at a time.  Our requests have been anywhere from 1 to 1000 at a time; although we once had a request for 6000, an entire Brigade of soldiers!
  • The ideal would be for you to get your church, company, or organization to receive donations to supply the entire unit of your particular service man or woman. Our ministry’s purpose in sending them whole units at a time is that there are many receiving bandanas that have never opened a Bible before or darkened the door of a church or chapel who would not receive a gift such as this without the body of Christ providing it.  Many will be introduced to God’s word for the first time through receiving a bandana.

How long does it take to get the bandanas once you receive the donation?

It can take two weeks or more, based on availability of the fabric and printing.  The further out that we are contacted of when they are needed, the better.

Can I send a donation to you with an address of a serviceman for you to send directly to?

Yes, upon request, we can mail the bandanas directly to a particular serviceman or woman for them to then distribute once received.  Please be sure that he/she is willing to either pass them out themselves or give to the Chaplain to pass out.

How long have you been sending bandanas as gifts of spiritual support and encouragement?

Operation Bandanas provided their first bandanas to a chaplain in Iraq in November, 2006.

Is my personal donation tax-deductible?

Operation Bandanas is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, thus federally approved to give tax-deductible credit to donors.  Our EIN number is 260284959.

Do you speak personally to churches and, if so, do you charge any specific amount for speaking?

  • Yes, I love to come to churches to speak personally about the ministry of Operation Bandanas.  I have an inspiring 30 minute presentation, a video included, that has been very well received.  I have spoken on numerous occasions for Missions emphasis, Patriotic services, Christian school programs, etc.
  • I ask that my travel (mileage) expenses be covered to include overnight expenses if an overnight stay is necessary because of distance traveled.  Any amount given as a speaker’s fee, for time and preparation is gratefully received!

Do you also do other speaking in addition to speaking about the ministry of Operation Bandanas?

This is one of my most favorite things in the world to do! I LOVE to share God’s Word with other women, filling them with encouragement and hope and motivating them to be all they can be in Christ. I have been the guest speaker at numerous women’s events to include Mother-Daughter Teas, MOPs groups (Mothers of Preschoolers); PWOC events (Protestant Women of the Chapel); Military wives retreats; Senior Adult groups; and women’s conferences and retreats. I have a number of topics that I enjoy sharing or I can prepare whatever the theme or chosen scripture. My most recent topics that I shared were titled “Who Am I?”, understanding what shapes our identity and why we act the way we do; “Fearless”, exploring the how to’s of overcoming our fears and how “no fear” living can become a reality; and “Just Give Me Some Peace and Quiet”, learning that peace and quiet is possible even in the midst of a troubled world and our own personal struggles.

How do I donate?

You may use the Donate Now button on the front page of the website; or mail a check to Operation Bandanas, PO Box Box 87356, Fayetteville, NC 28304. If you have any questions or want to contact me directly, my email address is mary@operationbandanas.org or call 910-578-8840. I don’t always have access to my phone, but I always check my emails, so that is the preferred way to communicate.

Do you carry camouflage patterns for the different branches of the military?

op-ban-patternsI am still trying to find the ABU fabric! But in the meantime, our Air Force has ordered either the ACU or Multicam pattern.