When was the last time you thanked a military member or veteran for their service? November is National Veterans and Military Family Appreciation Month, and Points of Light is highlighting ways you can celebrate, support and honor our service members. Here are four ways you can get involved, from volunteering to donating and beyond.
1. LISTEN AND LEARN WITH AN EDUCATIONAL PODCAST
Before acting on an issue, understanding it is essential. This is where listening and learning comes into play. When we are informed and educated about an issue, we can think more critically, make better decisions and lend stronger support.
Military OneSource has created two podcasts for military members and families to equip them with the knowledge and resources they need to thrive. Topics include deployment, recreation, casualty assistance, relationship health, money management, parenting resources and how to care for family members with special needs.
See how military veteran and Daily Point of Light honoree Michael Wisecup continues to serve by running a camp for children and families with life-threatening illnesses.
2. VOLUNTEER AS A VIRTUAL CASEWORKER FOR MILITARY FAMILIES
Volunteering is a crucial part of leading a civically engaged life and driving real and sustained change in your community. This type of hands-on support is some of the most impactful in the nonprofit sector, and organizations rely heavily on volunteer power to carry out their missions. The American Red Cross is currently recruiting caseworkers for military members, veterans and families. This volunteer role requires some training, but it can be carried out from anywhere, and shifts are flexible.
If you’re looking for other remote volunteer opportunities or want to find an in-person opportunity in your area, search Points of Light Engage, the world’s most comprehensive database of volunteer opportunities around the globe.
See how Navy servicewoman Daily Point of Light honoree Michaela White advocates for mental health in the military.
3. DONATE TO VETERANS, SERVICE MEMBERS AND THEIR FAMILIES
Donations to nonprofits remain critical in helping these organizations address the issues that matter most to us, societally and personally. Nonprofits and NGOs are dependent on donor support to pay their staff, recruit volunteers and execute their high-impact work. This year marks Wounded Warrior Project’s 20th anniversary, and you can support their mission by making a donation for National Veterans and Military Family Appreciation Month.
Wounded Warrior Project has been serving and supporting over 1 million post-9/11 wounded veterans, service members and their families since 2003 – through career and VA benefits counseling, mental health support, adaptive sports initiatives and more.
4. CELEBRATE AND HONOR VETERANS IN YOUR WORKPLACE
Supporting a cause you care about isn’t limited to your personal life. In fact, carrying civic engagement into our places of work is part of being a conscious contributor to social good. Military members and veterans add exceptional value to workplaces, bringing unique skillsets that can greatly benefit companies.
If you work with service members or veterans, consider ways you can celebrate and honor them this month. It might be as simple as thanking a coworker for their service, or as grand as hosting a lunch to honor them. You might consider organizing a volunteer event with your team that benefits service members. Whether gestures are large or small, thanking service members and veterans can go a long way in helping them feel seen and appreciated – not to mention boosting morale and contributing to a stronger team mentality across your workforce.
See how retired fireman, Army veteran and Daily Point of Light honoree Tom Schneider continues a life of service helping those in natural disasters.
There are a multitude of ways to get involved in National Veterans and Military Family Appreciation Month. Making a plan now will help set you up for success as you prepare to contribute your time, talent and resources to honoring our former and current military members and their families.