By Debbie Gregory.
Americans are continuously looking for ways to show their gratitude and support for the men and women who have served our country. There are many organizations that do a variety of charitable work, both for Veterans and active duty military. I encourage everyone to search our charity page to find a wonderful non-profit to donate time or resources to. But there are other ways that you, as an individual, can impact Veterans in your community and in in your life. Here are some suggestions of things you can easily do:
- Fly an American flag at your home or business and encourage your neighbors to do the same.
- Reach out to a Veteran you know. Contact that friend or family member who served and thank them. You can send them an ECard, or a handwritten note, take them out for coffee or dessert; any small gesture that shows that Veteran that he or she, and their service, are appreciated.
- Encourage your children and their schools to honor Veterans. Setting the example for school aged kids to honor people and traditions should be a part of their education and up-bringing. Kids can make hand painted thank you cards, and the schools can invite local Vets for an assembly.
- Organize a function at your workplace. Take time out of the workday to honor the Vets at your job. Buy a cake, blow up some balloons, decorate the work space to thank the Veterans that you work with.
- Post it! Make a Facebook post, a Tweet, an Instagram picture or any manner of social media outlet to show your support for Veterans.
- Contact your local college or university and ask if they have a Veteran’s Resource Center. You can offer to donate school supplies, paper, coffee or snacks. You can also donate funds for grants to help Veterans buy text books.
- Remember them. Take some time out of your day to reflect on what these men and women sacrificed in their service to their country. Say a prayer, read an article, talk to a Vet about their service, watch a war movie. Any time spent in remembrance will create more appreciation for Veterans.
- Hire a Veteran. If you are in a position at your place of business to hire or make hiring decisions, then why not show your support for Veterans by hiring one.
- Offer Veteran discounts at your place of business. A discount can be a priceless way to tell Vets that you support them.
- Say thank you whenever you can. If you see someone in uniform, or wearing service related apparel, be sure to tell them thank you.
While many establishments honor Veterans with discounts, not all do. So when you’re out buying your morning coffee, having lunch or dinner, take a look around and see if you can spot a Veteran, and buy their purchase when you pay for your own.