SERVE at Home - Decorate Pillowcases for Operation Gratitude


Family Volunteering

Start Date
End Date
1 hours
Your Home

Houston, TX
United States

Please complete this form to let us know you've completed the activity! Don't forget to take a photo to share with us!

Activity Description

SERVE at Home is a way for your family to spread kindness and help our community on your own, anytime, anywhere! We want to keep Houston volunteering all week long!

Our troops, who have bravely sacrificed their comfort so we may live freely, are not always deployed with bedding. Operation Gratitude needs the exceptional art skills of our volunteers to create decorate pillowcases for our troops to sleep on each night. And as a bonus, they can also use them as a laundry bag!

You will need to provide the supplies for this activity. You can complete this activity on your own anytime during the month.

Activity Directions

Operation Gratitude suggests using queen size pillowcases (20” x 30”). They must be new. You can use plain white or light colors so your decorations will show, but there are no restrictions on what color you send. Remember pillowcase will be sent to both men and women, so please select colors that would appeal to everyone. 

  • We suggest using indelible ink (i.e.: Sharpies for fabric or other brands of fabric markers) 
  • Alcohol ink  
  • You can also tie-dye your pillowcases.  
  • Be sure to place a towel or cardboard inside your pillowcase so your artwork does not bleed through to the other side. 
  • Please DO NOT use crayons, paint or glitter on your pillowcase.

We encourage you to include a note with every pillowcase you decorate! The note can be as simple as “Decorated by ______” or a short letter about yourself. Include your first name and email address or “snail mail” address—so the recipient can send you a “thank you” if they have time. Please understand that Operation Gratitude cannot guarantee that you will receive a reply, but hopefully you will give the recipient a chance to say thank you.

Please use regular paper and do not use a card or card stock for your notes. Cards do not fold well into a pillowcase and will usually end up damaged. Also, please be sure that your note does not stick out of your folded pillowcase. If you are uncomfortable using your personal address, feel free to use Operation Gratitude's ( but please also include your full name so that if they receive a note about your item, they can be sure to forward it to you. Please fold your note inside of your pillowcase but do not attach the note with any kind of pin or string.

You will need to fill out an online donation form. This form lets Operation Gratitude know when you are ready to send your donation. It also provides you with detailed instructions and labels for shipping (postage not included). Follow the shipping guidelines in the email you receive when you submit an online donation form.

Tell Us When You're Finished

Please complete this form to let us know you've completed the activity! We would love to see pictures of your family working together to complete this activity, so please take a photo to share with us! You can submit the photo through our form.

Activity Requirements

  • This activity is great for all ages. 
  • Our program is designed to be a family experience. We want parents and caregivers to work alongside their child(ren) for all our Family Volunteering activities.

More About Our Partner

Operation Gratitude's mission is to honor the service of our Military and First Responders by creating opportunities to express gratitude. Operation Gratitude is a nation-wide nonprofit dedicated to providing people across our great country with opportunities for hands-on volunteerism to say "thank you" to our Military, Veterans, and First Responders.

Support Generation SERVE

A $10 donation would help us continue developing new activities and ways for families to spread kindness throughout the community. You also can become a family sponsor to support us in providing fun volunteer opportunities for other families! Thank you for your support and generosity! We appreciate it!

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