Being a part of the military has its benefits. Some businesses give discounts, free things, and every once in a while we are humbled when a stranger comes up and thanks us. These simple things that civilians do to show their appreciation for our service members and for us as spouses reminds me that there are people that do still appreciate our military, what they do, and often times what they give up in order to serve.
A recent encounter with a stranger and a conversation with a friend has started to make me think… there are a lot of people who still show their support for our service members… Are we, as spouses, doing anything to show our gratitude for the discounts we’re given, the free items we sometimes receive, or complete strangers thanking our service members?
Let us, as military spouses, begin to show our appreciation for our local communities by giving back. There are so many things we can do to show our appreciation for the civilians in our area. Let’s show our local businesses and civilians that we appreciate them.
I have a challenge for you and I hope you will accept… Give back to your local communities and do it selflessly, asking no recognition. Here are some suggestions on what you can do, if you can’t or don’t want to do these there are so many other ways to give back.
Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths program is similar to the Locks of Love program, only it’s specifically for women fighting cancer. The donation needs to be at least eight inches and there is no maximum length.
Register to be a bone marrow donor with Be The Match. Not everyone will be able to register, but the more people that can and do register, the more lives that can be saved. The chances of being a match for someone who is in need of a bone marrow transplant is 1 in 540.
Donate blood, on or off post. When you donate blood within the military, that blood stays within the military. If you go off post to give blood, all you have to do is find your local blood bank and they will tell you what you need to do. To donate within the military, visit Armed Services Blood Program to find out when the next blood drive in your area will be held.
Some other ideas would be donating a bag of pet food, supplies, or old towels to a local animal shelter. Volunteer with your local Red Cross. Pay for the person’s coffee behind you in line at the coffee shop. Register as an organ donor (you can do this with your state to show on your driver’s license and even on your military ID card).
There are so many ways that we can give back to our local communities. Let us say “Thank you” to the people who are supporting our military.