Mid-Michigan organizations spread love to veterans during the holiday season

Published: Nov. 30, 2022 at 10:45 PM EST
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Making sure our military veterans don’t feel forgotten around the holidays is not a small task. A lot of veterans in Michigan have strong family connections but some of them don’t.

Advocates across the state said they’re doing their part to make sure veterans feel loved this holiday season.

“Sometimes when you have to leave your home and your community, it really can feel lonely at times and so family cards obviously are great but we really do try to zero in and make sure those veterans who don’t maybe have a family connection feel the love of the community through gifts, donations, Christmas cards – things like that,” said Community Engagement Coordinator at Michigan Veteran Homes, Tiffany Carr.

Volunteering your time or donating items are two simple ways you can make a difference in the life of a veteran during the holidays. This year, Michigan Veteran Homes’ Make a Veteran Smile Campaign is encouraging people to write letters and send cards to veterans who don’t have family nearby, or any family at all.

“They build relationships with these veterans that live there and are kind of a second family in many ways. And it doesn’t have to be through the No Member Dies Alone Program, they’re just volunteering at activities and being there for the holidays,” said Director of Development and Strategic Engagement at Michigan Veteran Homes, Ryan Engle.

Other local organizations are working to bring smiles to veterans’ faces, too. VFW Post 671 will host a food drive and a Christmas party to brighten up the holiday for vets.

The food drive will take place December 1st through 20th -- donations can be dropped off at 12250 S US Highway 127 in DeWitt. Their annual Christmas party will be open to the public on December 17th.

Michigan Blue Star Mothers Chapter 99 said they are thinking of active duty members who can’t make it home to their families this season.

“This is a Christmas pack, so it’s kind of a special pack where we try to make some homemade goodies to send to the troops, little things to remind them of Christmas and home,” said Vice President of Michigan Blue Star Mothers Chapter 99.

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