Information and Links for those who serve and their families:
Military OneSource - "Military OneSource is a free service provided by the Department of Defense to service members and their families to help with a broad range of concerns including money management, spouse employment and education, parenting and child care, relocation, deployment, reunion, and the particular concerns of families with special-needs members. They can also include more complex issues like relationships, stress, and grief. Services are available 24 hours a day — by telephone with professionally trained consultants and online. Many Military OneSource staff members have military experience (veterans, spouses, Guardsmen, Reservists), and all receive ongoing training on military matters and military lifestyle. The program can be especially helpful to service members and their families who live at a distance from installations."
Fleet and Family Support Program - "Fleet and Family Support Programs (FFSP) support individual and family readiness through a full array of programs and resources which help Navy families to be resilient, well-informed and adaptable to the Navy environment."
Commissaries.com - "The Defense Commissary Agency, which is headquartered at Fort Lee, VA., operates a worldwide chain of commissaries providing groceries to military personnel, retirees and their families in a safe and secure shopping environment."
Navy MWR - The Navy Morale, Welfare and Recreation Division administers a varied program of recreation, social and community support activities on U.S. Navy facilities worldwide. Our programs provide active-duty, reserve and retired Navy personnel and their families with sports and physical fitness activities, child development and youth programs, and a variety of food and beverage services. Our mission is to provide quality support and recreational services that contribute to the retention, readiness, mental, physical, and emotional well-being of our Sailors.
Veteran's Crisis Line - "The Veterans Crisis Line connects Veterans in crisis and their families and friends with qualified, caring Department of Veterans Affairs responders through a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text.
American Red Cross - The American Red Cross is where people mobilize to help their neighbors - across the street, scross the country, and across the world - in emergencies. Each year, in communities large and small, victims of some 70,000 disasters turn to neighbors familiar and new - the more than half a million volunteers and 35,000 employees of the Red Cross. Through nearly 700 locally supported chapters, more than 15 million people gain the skills they need to prepare for and respond to emergencies in their homes, communities and world.
VAHomeLoans.net - Helps veterans and military families use their VA benefits to save money on home loans and refinances. If you are a military or VA family, don't miss out on your opportunity to save money on your home purchase or refinance. VAHomeLoans.net will help you find a lender who can offer you the best rates on your loan and help you start saving money right away.
Information and Links for those supporting our troops:
Let's Bring Em Home! is a fantastic organization that helps get tickets home for service members who would otherwise be unable. I can personally vouch for this site, as one of my best friends was able to use it to get a cross country ticket home. They only offer this for junior service members (E4 and below). They should be gearing up for this holiday season in the coming weeks. You can donate as little or as much as you want. You can also donate frequent flier miles if you have them available and would care to go that route. They have a tax ID number and your donation is tax deductible.
Holiday Mail for Heroes is run through the RedCross and is NOT about donating money. The only thing you have to do is mail a card. I don't know how many of you still send out Christmas/Holiday cards every year, but I always wind up with extras. All you have to do is sign a card. There are some restrictions on this (ie - just cards, no letters and nothing inserted in the cards) so check their site. You can mail them a stack of 25 cards in one box. Don't bother with the envelope, they open it anyway. A very inexpensive way to say "Thanks" and "Happy Holidays" to men and women who are out there far from home during this time of the year.
AnySoldier.com will allow you to choose who you want to help. You can pick what branch of the military, where they are stationed, male/female ratio, etc. The service members on their lists are in DOD-designated harm's way. AnyMarine.com , AnySailor.com , AnyCoastGuard.com , AnyAirman.com . Donations are tax deductible. There are lots of options and plenty who could use some help. Send a package. Send a letter. Any little thing will help remind them there are people at home who care.