This Veteran’s Day, Don’t forget the MilWomen!

GUESTPOST by Fran Rossi Szpylczyn

Nicole Kasdorf is a determined woman. Tall, warm and with an easy smile, she is filled with palpable sense of mission and spirit. After having spent time in the US Army, deployed in Iraq, she knows that there are special needs for the women who serve our country. Upon returning home, she and her husband started a family and also a small business, The rOUgh STORE bY KASDORF’S, selling homemade bath and beauty products.

While we here tend to think of the war in Iraq as over, and the Afghanistan conflict as winding down, Kasdorf is keenly aware that there are many thousands still deployed “over there”. Focusing on women stationed on a remote base in Afghanistan, she began to form a vision — how about something to help these strong female soldiers feel like the women, especially when the going is “rough?”

With support from Father Pat Butler, pastor at St. Edward the Confessor in Clifton Park, New York, Pat Butler, Kasdorf’s idea became “Spartan Women Care Packs”. Life in the harsh world of a far-off military base, can sometimes mean no indoor plumbing, a long walk to the shower, and few if any PX supplies geared toward women’s needs. Kasdorf, more than well aware of this, devised a package suited to those needs.

Each “Spartan Women Care Pack” is to include a shower caddy, flip-flops, and a number of Kasdorf’s “rOUgh” bath and beauty products. Father Pat got Youth Minister, Sister Rosemary Casaleno, CSJ involved, for assembly help and collection of hygiene and skin care items and Sister, reaching out to Philosophy cosmetics, quickly procured 100 tubes of “The Supernatural,” a tinted primer.

Parishioners have been donating goods and financial support to make Kasdor’s idea a reality. At this point, cash donations are becoming particularly important, for the purchase of packaging materials and postage.

Nicole Kasdorf is a woman with a vision and she is seeking help from many sources, particularly as Christmas nears.

Interested in helping? You can donate directly through Nicky Kasdorf’s website, The rOUgh STORE bY KASDORF’S, or by contacting Sister Rose at, or emailing me at

Fran Rossi Szpylczyn blogs at There Will Be Bread

About Elizabeth Scalia