Thanksgiving is all about expressing gratitude and appreciation for all that we have. But in many cases, the people who give the most for our freedoms aren’t able to enjoy all of those benefits as much as the rest of us do. That’s why this time of year is such a great way to give back to military families and thank them for the sacrifices they make. Helping military families doesn’t require grand gestures, either. Even the littlest things can make a big impact. Here are just three ways to make a difference for military personnel and their families this Thanksgiving.
- Send thank-you cards
Many charitable organizations host holiday card drives to spread well wishes and gratitude to those currently serving in the military or those in veterans hospitals. These events often run from before Thanksgiving up to Christmas, which gives you plenty of time to write your cards. These programs might seem rather impersonal, but they’re an excellent way to bring joy into someone’s life and show them that their service is appreciated.
- Adopt a soldier
Some communities will host adopt-a-solider events during Thanksgiving, particularly when soldiers are stationed in town for training. Active duty soldiers don’t often get to travel back home for the holidays, so inviting a member of the military to your own Thanksgiving table can be a revitalizing act for many people. Usually, you’ll have to register and be matched up with a soldier for official events.
- Gather clothing and household donations
Another way of helping military families is to gather up used clothing donations and other household items and bring them to an organization that is specifically geared towards veterans and their loved ones. These charitable organizations are always looking for donations, but it’s especially important during the holidays. More than likely, you’ll have tons of clothes and tools in your home that you don’t use but are in perfectly good shape. These items can be of immense value to families in need. Make sorting through these items into a fun pre-Thanksgiving event and drop them off right before or right after the holiday.
Helping military families doesn’t have to take up a lot of time, and in fact, you’ll get as much out of it as they will. Remember to keep these families in your heart and mind this holiday season.