Capt. Hoffman founded Kids of Iraq (KOI) after meeting Saddam, a young boy who had lost his parents in an IED attack. Saddam himself was severely injured. "He had nowhere to go," says Hoffman. Once Saddam's extended family was located, he was only allowed to take a small pillowcase of donated goods with him. "It's just what people could scrape together to give to these children," says Hoffman. "I was really moved. I wanted to help these children."
Kids of Iraq was born from Saddam's struggle. The non-profit organization collects toys, educational materials and other goods through their website - www.KidsOfIraq.org. Deployed troops then deliver the materials to children in need.
In addition to helping these kids, Hoffman believes KOI has helped U.S./Iraqi relations as well. "Just from simple donations, it has shown that the U.S. and its troops are willing to help the Iraqis. We want to see this country be able to stand up on its feet and this is one way we show our support," says Hoffman.
For more information on how you can help support the Kids of Iraq, visit the organization's website by clicking here.
By Erin Petrun