People seized this opportunity. In fact, it was said that towns not included in the route were upset and wanted additional lines created. The Friendship Train gained traction from people all across the country.
Another initiative that sprang up at that time was started by a woman, Iris Gabriel, a self-proclaimed "big zero." That is, at least until she visited Great Barrington, Massachusetts and came up with the idea for the "Silent Guest" program.
At Thanksgiving 1947, people were asked to take in a "silent guest" at their holiday dinner and donate the cost of feeding that guest. This led to numerous donations which bought CARE packages to feed the hungry in Europe. Gabriel, who spent years hospitalized for tuberculosis, became the leader of a major hunger-fighting initiative.
Speaking of packages, a couple of employees at the Kroger grocery chain in Cincinnati, Ohio launched their own idea about feeding the hungry. They took the company's overseas gift service for troops in the war and expanded it to deliver food to needy civilians.
None of these individuals waited to be appointed "the boss" of U.S. foreign policy and postwar relief. They took it upon themselves and seized the opportunity. As Pearson and others were quick to point out, they were way ahead of Congress in terms of granting new aid packages.
The massive interim aid food package and the Marshall Plan were major parts of the the plan to rebuild Europe. These of course were much larger aid and reconstruction tools approved by Congress. However, there is nothing like having some leadership from the public help point the way in American foreign policy.
That is what you want in a country or an organization – people with ideas and willing to lead. You need this creativity to be encouraged. It's more fun that way.