Freedom Is Not Free: A Salute to Our Veterans

Today is a day to remember veterans who put their lives on the line in defense of the United States and our freedoms.

MilitaryAvenue.com has a list of 101 wonderful ways to thank a veteran. Visit their website to read the full list.

Here are eleven suggestions for 11/11:

1. Take a veteran out to eat – breakfast, lunch or dinner. It doesn’t matter which!

2. Contact Operation Gratitude to see how to donate and support our active military. This organization is based in California and I volunteered with them when I lived there.

3. Call and visit a local VA hospital. There are many ways to volunteer. Ask how you can contribute. A group to which I belong sponsored a Halloween party for hospitalized veterans and they loved it.

4. If you see a military member in a restaurant or in the airport,  buy them a drink or pay for their dessert.

5. Purchase and wear poppy flowers, which are sold at this time of year by veterans’ groups. Proceeds made from these sales many times go to disabled, needy, and aging veterans across the country. A local Tucson veterans group sold them outside my supermarket last year.

6. Nearly 40 percent of our veteran population is 65 or older. Give a veteran your phone number and ask them to call if they need help around the house. Get their phone number and offer your help.

7. Is there a Fisher House near you? Contact them to find out how you can support families of our military in need of longer term medical care.

8. Organizations like the Home Depot Foundation, Volunteers of America, and The Mission Continues work to help homeless veterans. 

9. Know a veteran’s hobby? Send them a subscription to a related magazine.

10. Combat-related stress and traumatic brain injury is real.  Veterans of World Wars, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan and so many other conflicts still have symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and need our help.  Educate yourself, support programs like the Home Base Program,  and learn how you can help the veterans in your family and community.

11. Contact Student Veterans of America, an organization that helps former military personnel adjust to life as a civilian college student. Ask how you can help.

 

 


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