99 WAYS TO GET INVOLVED
Here, you will find 99+ ways that you can get involved in supporting the troops, their families, and the nation.
If you have a way to help, please share it at [email protected] or find us on social media.
These leaders and influencers lend their power to the Code of Support – committing their efforts and resources to helping those who served us all.
COMMITTEE OF 99 DISTINGUISHED AMERICANS
Most Americans require a vehicle to get to and from work and to run various errands. By donating your unwanted or used vehicles to veterans, you can help them better both their lives and the lives of their families.
One of the best ways for service members to reintegrate into the civilian world is by getting an education. Today, it is almost impossible to receive a degree in higher education without a computer or laptop. By donating your unused computers and laptops to a veteran, you can help them work towards a degree, bettering both their life and the lives of their family members.
You can make a difference in the lives of expecting parents and families by helping supply them with needed diapers, wipes and baby carriers. The price of diapers and wipes quickly adds up and can become difficult to continue affording them when you don’t have the funds. Donating a baby carrier can cover the cost and offer one less thing for families to worry about.
Transitioning from military life to civilian life can be difficult for veterans, especially if they do not have a means of transportation. You can help a veteran in need by donating your unused or unwanted bicycle! You will be providing a veteran with a cost effective, low maintenance way to get from point A to point B.
When a service member transitions from military life to civilian life, they face the challenge of entering the civilian job force. To do so, he or she must look professional. This involves trading in their uniform for expensive business attire. Make their transition easier by organizing a suit drive where your employees and other people can donate business attire to transitioning service members.
Save A Suit (CT)
Every parent knows that their kids do not stay the same size their whole lives. As they grow, they will need new clothes. For military and veteran families struggling financially, it can become difficult to continue buying new clothes for their children. Donate the clothes that your children have outgrown of to Baby2Baby in order to help clothe children in need.
If you have recently upgraded to a new cell phone and don’t know what to do with your old one or happen to have extras lying around not being used, consider donating them to Cell Phones for Soldiers. You can help connect deployed soldiers to their family and friends while thousands of miles away for extended periods of time.
Do you have extra clothes, furniture, kitchen appliances, etc. that you don’t know what to do with? Rather than throwing your unwanted belongings out, donate them to a veteran or military family in need of basic amenities! It’s easy to schedule a pick-up time with the below organizations to donate your items!
Veterans Association of America
Baby supplies adds up. Diapers, wipes, food, strollers, car seats. For lower income veteran and military families, affording these necessities can be difficult. Help alleviate the stress of affording baby supplies by organizing a drive and donating to the GOOD+ Foundation.
GOOD+ Foundation (CA & NY)
With only 1% of the population serving in the military, it comes as no surprise that there is a gap between the military and civilian community. Watching our documentary will help bridge that gap and increase support for service members, veterans and their families. So, grab some popcorn and check it out!
PATRIOTlink is a cloud-based resource navigation platform built by service providers, for service providers to make finding and leveraging resources as easy as possible for nonprofit or government service providers assisting veterans and their families. Joining our PATRIOTlink program will truly benefit you and your cause!
At COSF, we always appreciate hearing new ways people think of to give back. We will do what we can and help you start! Contact us to get started.
By signing the Code of Support, you can show service members, veterans and their families that you pledge to give them your full support and you will share the responsibility for defending America’s freedom.
Volunteering and training as a COSF case coordinator is a fantastic way to directly help veterans and their families get the support they need! You could change a family’s life for the better and make a difference in the world.
Here at COSF, there are always new stories, events and activities going on! Sign up for our Newsletter to read about them and share with friends!
Engage with us on social media. We post and share things often and love to interact with our followers! Like and share our posts and tweets with your friends and family!
Donors like you make it possible for our team at COSF to provide essential and critical one-on-one assistance to struggling service members, veterans and their families with complex needs. Your donations, no matter how big or small, help sustain our organization and make a difference in the lives of service members, veterans and their families.
Share your story about a time you touched the lives of military and veteran communities or, for service members, veterans and their families, tell a story of how someone else touched your life! Sharing stories is a powerful way to demonstrate the impact people have on others through service.
With so many different ways to get involved, it is easy to choose which one (or 12) you can do! Share your story and how you impacted the lives of service members, veterans and their families using #99ways.
It is never easy for veteran and military families to deal with post-deployment and reintegration challenges. At times, it may seem like you are alone. Utilize the resources available to you in order to make your challenges a little less challenging.
National Military Family Association
Armed service members would not be able to do what they do without the support of their spouses. That is why it is important to not only support veterans and service members, but also their loved ones. Do so by volunteering and learning more about what they go through in order to gain a greater appreciation and understanding of how they serve our country.
How To Support Military Spouses
It’s not easy being apart from a loved one during deployment. At times, both service members and their family members feel quite alone. By adopting a military service member or a military family member you provide them with support, encouragement and friendship.
Imagine how difficult it would be to uproot and move your family every 2-3 years. Military families often must relocate and start over in new communities. By reaching out and offering your friendship, you can provide military families with support and a feeling of belonging in their new community.
Why Appreciate Military Families?
The emotional toll deployments have on military family members is strenuous. Taking a course that teaches family members how to cope with deployment can better prepare you and your family for dealing with such a drastic change. It can offer useful resources and tools that provide a sense of reassurance and support as well.
In war zones, injuries and casualties are unavoidable. When soldiers are wounded and suffer from a loss of blood, they rely on the blood donations given to the ASBP. By donating blood, you help ensure that no soldier goes without help!
Moving from new place to new place can make it difficult for military families to find reliable, affordable childcare. Provide your services to military and veteran families. Having access to dependable childcare assures these families that their children are in good hands.
It’s never easy to motivate people to reach out and get help when you are unsure of how to do so. Friends and family members of veterans can help their loved ones by getting help from licensed professionals. They can teach you what to do and how to help!
The holiday season is a time of giving! Help out a local military family by nominating them to receive a decorated home for the holidays. This will provide lucky families with a sense of community and holiday cheer!
Military parents, family and friends, learn how to care for your children during and after deployments
Children are greatly affected by the deployment of their parents. Take action and learn how to help your child adjust and cope during a time of transition. They will surely benefit in the long term!
Military and veteran families often deal with emotional stress that takes up much of their time and energy. Help them out by preparing a meal or baking for them! Your thoughtfulness and kindness will make their lives easier and will show you care!
Imagine returning from service, injured without access to needed medical equipment. Help out a wounded veteran by donating a wheelchair and providing him/her with mobilization. By providing a vet with mobilization, you open doors that can lead to a better life.
When veterans return from deployment suffering from Post Traumatic Stress (PTSD) and/or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), their families are directly affected. Family members should know that they are not alone. Establishing a network of peer support and learning coping strategies can help alleviate the strain of living with PTSD or TBI and can help strengthen strained relationships.
Becoming expectant parents is both exciting and scary. It may be difficult to gather the funds needed to buy all the necessary supplies for having a baby. Giving a “Shower in a Box” is an easy way to show your support and help supply expectant military parents with useful items!
Being apart of veteran and military communities often leaves people feeling isolated from surrounding civilian communities. Show your acceptance and support for veteran and military families by encouraging them to engage with community organizations and their neighbors. Every military family hopes to feel as though they belong. Do your part and help build a network of support!
Unless you are apart of the military community, it is difficult to understand what they experience day-to-day. By learning about military children and their families, you gain insight into military culture and understand what they may need. This better enables you to support and connect with them, resulting in a more inclusive community!
‘Military Children’: Their Struggles, Sacrifices And Strengths
The strain of taking care of a wounded veteran can be extremely taxing on the caregiver and the veteran’s family members. Helping to alleviate this strain by meeting the current requests of wounded veteran families can be incredibly helpful and supportive. Get in contact with a local VA or the Quality of Life Foundation to find out how you can do your part!
Share your love for reading with children of military families! Books can take you anywhere and can spark imagination. For a military child, this can come in handy when he/she moves frequently and faces the challenge of starting over in a new place.
The Reading Connection (DC Metro Area)
It’s easy to show your support for military and veteran communities! Try volunteering to lead one of your local Blue Star Families chapters or buy and wear a “survival strap”, proceeds going towards supporting the men and women in the Armed Services.
Become a role model for military children and the children of the fallen while volunteering to work as a camp counselor or mentor! Working as a camp counselor is a great way to spend the summer and impact kids’ lives. It’s hard to imagine just what military children go through, and by leading them at camp, you can gain insight and understanding as well.
Big Brothers & Big Sisters Of America
11% of the adult homeless population are veterans. 51% of homeless veterans have disabilities and 50% live with mental illness. Learn more about veteran homelessness and how you can help. In doing so, you can help save lives and give back to the service men and women who served to protect your freedoms!
National Coalition For Homeless Veterans
If you are looking for a way to use your gardening skills and bring your community together, then consider planting a community garden! You can help beautify your community and provide affordable access to organic, healthy foods. You can also dedicate your garden to our armed service members and veterans as a way to say thank you for their service and sacrifice!
American Community Garden Association
Remember searching for your first job? You had to find a job you were interested in, write an impressive resume and make it through the interview process. Imagine being a veteran fresh out of the military with little to no experience searching for a job. Help make the transition easier for service members, veterans and their spouses by holding a Warrior Transition Workshop or volunteering to mentor them.
Small businesses are vital to our economy. Do your part and support both your community and veteran business owners and their families. Provide your entrepreneurial expertise and mentor small business owners in order to help them succeed!
The pressure to look your best in the workplace can be overwhelming, especially for transitioning service women. The financial strain of having to afford a whole new wardrobe in order to enter a new professional setting can be difficult to manage. You can help by donating your gently used professional clothing to Dress for Success or other consignment businesses that provide affordable clothing options for women.
With so many options to buy products and services from different businesses, why not choose to support veterans and the military community in the process? Buying from and using services provided by veterans, military spouse entrepreneurs and business owners keeps them in business and shows your gratitude for their service.
Do you remember how expensive it was putting together an appropriate, professional wardrobe when beginning your first job? When service members leave the military for the civilian world, they are faced with the price of trading their uniform for a suit. Help transitioning service members by organizing a drive or donating a suit or other professional attire to donation centers across the country.
Save A Suit (CT)
Thank the servicemen and women who risk their lives in the line of duty in order to protect your freedoms. Offer discounts to service members, veterans and their families. Doing so not only helps them and their families, but also helps establish a positive reputation for your business! It’s a small thank you for a big sacrifice.
People prefer to support organizations that stand by a cause they believe in. Develop cause-related marketing strategies that focuses on veterans, service members and their families. This not only helps your business but also helps service members, veterans and their families by raising awareness and encouraging support.
It may seem difficult to hire people that will perform to your satisfaction in the workplace. Hiring veterans will make this task easier! Many are disciplined, driven and have the skills you are looking for. Consider hiring a veteran and learn more about the advantages and benefits of hiring veterans!
Art is a powerful tool for coping that can provide veterans and service members with a positive, emotional outlet. Putting energy into art allows people to express how they feel and channel their thoughts and emotions into their work. Volunteering to participate in or instruct an art class allows you to encourage veterans and service members to continue their journey towards improving their mental health!
American Healing Arts Foundation (AZ)
Deployments send soldiers thousands of miles away from home for extended periods of time. Often soldiers feel homesick and lonely. Filling care packages with activities, cards, movies and music can offer a welcome distraction from the realities of deployment and war. You can remind soldiers that they are not forgotten and that they are greatly missed by sending a care package.
You can make a deployed service woman’s day by sending her a care package filled with the items she doesn’t have access to abroad! Items as simple as hair ties, bobby pins, and books are great to send. Plus, sending a care package lets service women know that you are thinking about them and are grateful for their service and sacrifice.
Operation Courage Is Beautiful
Making and sending cards are great ways to show service members and veterans your appreciation for their sacrifices. A thank you letter can make everything they do (or did) worthwhile, and a card received during the holidays can boost moral! Consider turning your card making endeavors into a fun social event by inviting friends and family to join you!
Do you have a talent or passion for quilting? Wrap a veteran or service member in hope, healing and support by providing him/her with a quality quilt. In doing so, you can give back and say thank you for their service!
Foster a pet while a soldier is training or deployed
When soldiers deploy, they leave behind loved ones, including pets. You can provide service members with peace of mind by fostering their pets while they are away. Knowing that their pets are loved and cared for in their absence allows soldiers to serve and protect our freedoms with one less thing to worry about!
Guardian Angels For Soldier’s Pets
Do you love dogs and enjoy helping people? Become a trainer or volunteer to work with and train service dogs for veterans! You can change a life by helping pair a veteran with a companion that will help him or her heal from the aftermath of war.
Canines For Service (NC)
Volunteer to be a weekend puppy trainer, serve as an advisor on the board of directors, work in the kennels and/or host fundraising events for America’s VetDogs
Many veterans and service members suffer from emotional injury and/or physical injury as a result of serving in the line of duty. Both service dogs and emotional support dogs provide veterans and service members with the support needed to better function in the civilian world. By volunteering your time and engaging with organizations that help provide veterans with service dogs, you help veterans, service members and their families cope and heal.