War is a serious time in any nation’s history. It’s an unfortunate reality that many experience in their daily lives, whether they know someone who’s serving or they are an active servicemember themselves. Either way, war affects everyone. Still, there are many ways to show appreciation to veterans you may not realize. Check out these ideas on how you can help out your local veterans and show them your respect or admiration.
It may not seem like much, but there are many charities that target active and retired military servicemembers. These charities provide non-perishable food, clothes, money, and other essential goods. With many local and national charitable organizations to choose from, like Wounded Warriors or the Purple Heart Service Foundation, there’s no reason not to. These organizations ensure better quality of life for combat veterans and their families.
Thank Them for Their Service
As simple as it is, thank them for their service. While personal opinions may cause issues, a simple smile and thank-you is all it takes to show an active or retired servicemember you care. More so, you can treat them a warm meal or cup of coffee. Bring home-cooked or store-bought meals to a local veteran and drop it off. Otherwise, ask them if they can join you for a meal out on the town. Ask them about their experience if they’re comfortable talking about it. Do not press them for information though as this may be offensive and cause tension. These meals don’t need to be elaborate. Even a cup of coffee is enough to show you care too.
Visit a War Memorial
Also, consider visiting a war memorial. Showing your respect at a war memorial is one of the best ways to show appreciation to veterans. While it may not be an everyday occurrence, plan a trip to a local or national war memorial, like the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, World War II Memorial, and so on. Bring your family and teach them about these fallen soldiers. Remind young ones about the sacrifices these people made to US history and their service to the country. This may inspire your own children to join the armed forces.
Visit a Veteran’s Hospital
Visiting or volunteering at a veteran’s hospital is another great way to show your appreciation. While showing your respect with a free meal, donated items, or visiting a war memorial is important, going to a VA hospital gives you an in-person unique experience. Volunteer your time and help out those in need. Talk to them, help them, and show them you care about their past combat experience. Check your local VA hospital to see ways you can volunteer or for proper visitation hours.