BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Staying in contact with your loved ones shouldn’t come at a cost, but if it does, WiFi for Warriors has your back.
Wi-Fi may seem like a given when you think about the many internet capabilities the United States has, however for soldiers overseas internet connection does not come as easily.
A Birmingham mother and daughter started WiFi for Warriors when the seemingly small issue hit their family close to home. Kendall Crumbaugh told CBS 42 her brother-in-law who is a U.S. soldier was deployed overseas when they realized he needed a personal Wi-Fi hotspot.
“When my brother-in-law was deployed we found out that he had to pay $100 a month for his Wi-Fi so luckily our family and friends pulled together and raised money to support him while he was gone,” Crumbaugh said. “But then right before second deployment, we were talking about it and [we] were like we are so lucky that we have these people to support him, but what about the people who dont? They’re already making such big sacrifices, they shouldn’t have to worry about how they’re going to talk to their family.”
Kendall Crumbaugh’s mother, Laura Crumbaugh, said Wi-Fi is available on the base, but it doesn’t provide the capabilities of FaceTiming family, streaming Netflix and other web-based everyday activities.
“A camp typically supports about 3 to 4,000 soldiers and within that, there is one room that has 10 computers set up and the commander will tell you that if there are fewer than five soldiers there, then a [web]page loads in about three minutes,” Laura Crumbaugh said.
WiFi for Warriors is a new organization and in only one month, they have already raised $12,000. Through their efforts, soldiers overseas are able to FaceTime, Skype, download movies and stream their favorite shows from their bedside. It may seem like an unnecessary luxury, but small matters can have a huge impact on a soldier overseas who gets to FaceTime with their spouse.
So far, WiFi for Warriors supports platoons based out of Seattle, but they are hoping to expand their reach. Especially some soldiers based out of Alabama.
Through their website, you are able to fill out an application, donate and find more information about the WiFi for Warriors missions. If you donate $250 or more, you are able to receive a metal hand bracelet with a soldier’s name and area on it. Through this, Laura Crumbaugh says you will be able to keep him or her in your thoughts and prayers during their deployment.