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10 Easy Ways To Support Our Troops And Veterans

Veterans Day 2013

As we enjoy the Veteran’s Day parades being held in honor of the brave Veterans and Heroes currently serving in the U.S. Armed Services, we must all remember that waving flags and throwing parades are not enough. The brave men and women and their families who sacrifice so much for this country deserve more than just a single day of remembrance.

Over the last couple decades, we have asked far too much of these proud Americans. They are enduring seemingly endless tours of duty that are wreaking havoc them – physically and mentally.

 

Here are 10 easy ways that you can truly support our Troops and Veterans.

Support Veterans1. Offer More Than a “Thank You For Your Service” To Veterans In Your Community

I was listening to the Diane Rehm Show on NPR this morning. During her segment on Veteran’s Drug Courts, Barbara Van Dahlen, founder and president of “Give an Hour” made a simple suggestion:

Don’t just offer a thank you for their service. Ask Veterans how they are doing and if they need help re-adjusting to civilian life. Sometimes they may simply not know that resources such as The Veterans Crisis Line are available to them or where to find them.

2. Visit The Wounded Warrior Project

On their site, you can make a financial donation or explore other opportunities to give back.

3. Donate Books, DVDs and Games

Consider donating books, DVD’s and games to our troops overseas. Books for Soldiers keeps a list of the books our soldiers would like to receive.

Veterans History Project

4. Participate in the Veterans History Project

As time passes, we are losing generations of brave soldiers. Frank Buckles, the last surviving American veteran of World War I died in February of 2011. Sen. Frank Lautenberg, the last surviving World War II to serve in the United States Senate died in June of this year.

These brave men and women have so much to tell us. We owe it to them to listen.

5. Call Congress And Tell Them To Increase, Not Cut Veteran’s Benefits

Our Veterans have already made substantial sacrifices for this nation. Some of them have paid the ultimate price. It is shameful that some members of Congress feel that they should balance the future budget on the backs of our heroes, while providing tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans.

Contact your Representative in Congress today and tell them that cuts to the VA and other programs that provide assistance to our Heroes is unacceptable.

Operation Gratitude

6. Send A Soldier A Care Package

The Veterans United Network put together a great video with suggestions on the best items to include in your packages. Those MRE’s get pretty boring after a while.

7. Provide Foster Care For A Deployed Veteran’s Pets

Pets are a part of our family. (Some even help us write our blog posts, like my best friend is doing right now!) The last thing our brave men and women serving abroad need to worry about is the safety and care of their beloved pets. Often times, their family members may not be prepared or willing to care for them for a variety of reasons. Organizations like Guardian Angels for Soldier’s Pets is ready, willing and able to assist.

8. Help A Homeless Veteran

The homelessness problem in America is one of our national shames. Unfortunately, Veterans are often disproportionately affected by homelessness. If you know of a Veteran who is on the verge of homelessness or is already homeless, visit the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website or call 1-877-4AID-VET (1-877-424-3838)

9. Volunteer At A VA Hospital

Another way to serve Veterans is to volunteer at your local VA Hospital. A lot of Veterans, especially older ones, may not have any family or friends to visit with them.

10. Support Candidates And Policies That Support Limited American War Involvement

The best way to support Veterans is to stop creating new ones! Americans are paying far too high of a price, in both blood and treasure fighting our endless wars.

These are just a few ways that you can help. I’d like to know: How do you help support our Veterans? Let me know in the comments below.

Please share this post on Twitter, Facebook and other social media to help guide others on how to support our Veterans!

Image Credits: LA DragnetTexVet; Veterans History Project; Operation Gratitude

About Michael Brewer

Michael Brewer earned his degree in Political Science from the University of Pittsburgh but learned to love politics from working on local campaigns and LGBT Equality activism. He is a full time small business owner and part time Blogger. His most recent venture is The Liberal Brew - A Progressively Liberal news and opinion blog devoted to equality for all, returning sanity to our political discourse and restoring reason in America.

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