Memorial Day is upon us which, for many, means the start of summer, department store sales, and an opportunity to wear the white we hid last Labor Day.
What Memorial Day honors, however, is all those who have died in American Wars.
At Give2Get, we have built many programs that assist active military service personnel and veterans. Today we’d like to highlight two of those organizations.
With Operation Gratitude, the opportunities to assist are endless.
Volunteers we work with often pack “boredom busters” with playing cards, puzzle books, and other items that troops need. We include paracord bracelets, too.
You can choose numerous ways to help, though. Like writing letters? Send a stack of handwritten notes for volunteers to distribute in care packages. Pack up outgrown Beanie Babies and other small stuffed animals to send overseas. If you already knit, the summer is a perfect time to start working on scarves and hats for service members.
Regular Amazon users can shop the organization’s Wish List the next time you’re online and send a few items to Operation Gratitude. Want a no-thought-required way to donate? Set up an Amazon Smile account connected to Operation Gratitude. A percentage of what you purchase will then go to the charity every time you shop.
We often work with local Veterans of Foreign Wars posts as well. These organizations foster camaraderie among U.S. veterans and advocate on their behalf, helping them navigate assistance and benefits programs that at times can be confusing.
According to their website, “our voice was instrumental in establishing the Veterans Administration, development of the national cemetery system, in the fight for compensation for Vietnam vets exposed to Agent Orange and for veterans diagnosed with Gulf War Syndrome.” The group also fought for the 2008 GI Bill, which gave additional educational benefits to service members fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.
When Give2Get works with local chapters of the VFW, volunteers are generally asked to refurbish various spaces within the building, landscape around the building’s exterior, or make other repairs. This saves the VFW posts money that they would have spent on this labor and assist them when they use their halls for different events including scout meeting, community picnics, and fundraisers for local charities.