7 Fantastic Things You Can Do To Support Soldiers & Their Families
Until you’ve had a family member serve in the armed services, it’s almost impossible to completely understand the dynamics of the life of a military family. And when the loved one is deployed, the physical, mental and emotional dynamics drastically change again.
Regardless of whether your family member has served, your connection to the military families in our country is solid. Your freedom is maintained by their sacrifice. WE need them - those who fight - and their families who support them. But, they need US, too.
Here’s just a few ways we can help:
1. Reach out to a military family in your neighborhood/community.
Consider what you can offer: A meal? Run an errand? Babysit? Home repair skills? Legal or financial skills? Photography skills? Tutoring? Therapy?
We all have something to offer - and often times a small amount of our time and ability helps in significant ways. Military families in your community can be identified by reaching out to your local veteran service organization. Other service organizations such as Kiwanis or Lions or your local school counselors or faith-based organizations can also help find a military family who needs what you can offer.
2. Provide a temporary home for a pet.
When soldiers are deployed or their families transferred, the family pet can’t always go along. However, a temporary shelter until the soldier and/or family returns can be a welcomed solution in taking care of another “loved one” while away.
3. Offer rides to disabled veterans.
Not only do injured and ill veterans need the physical help of getting to appointments, but they also need to know that someone recognizes and cares about their sacrifice to this country. Taking a few minutes a week or a month to provide this needed service is a form of saying “thank you” they’ll appreciate.
4. Help a veteran share his or her story.
The Library of Congress is collecting stories for the Veterans History Project. Simple forms and steps to submit stories/experiences can be found here: https://www.loc.gov/vets/kit.html. Helping a veteran share their experience helps us all remember and learn.
5. Donate gift cards.
Have any extras sitting around that you don’t think you’ll use anytime soon? One statistic shows that 40% of gift card holders do not use the total value of the card. Those remaining balances and unused card can be donated to a military family to help with living costs. Check out this site for easy steps on how to donate: https://www.charitygiftcertificates.org/gce/specialpages/SupportMilitary/.
6. Donate your old phone or tablet.
New, used, broken or cracked. Cell Phones for Soldiers will accept them all. And your donation provide thousands of free minutes to soldiers to talk with their loved ones as well as assistance when they’re back home.
7. Say “Thank You.”
2 words. Maybe 2 seconds? That’s all it takes.
When you see a man or woman in uniform. When you see someone wearing a cap or t-shirt. Or when you notice a bumper sticker identifying them as protector of your freedom. Smile and say “thank you.” Your gratitude could be the very moment of redemption for them that day. And, we owe a thousand moments to each of them.
BONUS: Don’t forget to check out these fun tees that promote freedom and family and show your American spirit. $1 per t-shirt will donated to US Veterans. Check out all of our tees at: www.myfreedommyfamily.com.
Remember Those Who Defended Freedom
USA Military: Navy First Generation
Proud Military Daughter
Shine On, Kimberly
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