It’s the time of year when people make holiday wish lists, plan parties and look for ways to give back to those less fortunate. During this fast-paced holiday shuffle it is easy to overlook the significance of the little things in life, like opportunities to spend time with family. As a military mother and wife this is something very dear to me, as I understand that having everyone around to share in the holiday festivities is not always possible for many families like mine. This is the time of year I make sure to pause and remember that despite all the gifts, travel and parties, it is family that matters most.
Many times over the years, it felt like my husband Bob was away more than he was home, and keeping our family in balance during these times of separation was challenging. Separation can be financially and emotionally exhausting, but there are wonderful support systems and strong communities in place to help those who serve our nation. Some of that support comes from companies and organizations working to ease certain burdens that military families face.
This holiday season, I’m thrilled to be working alongside the Walmart Foundation, which has teamed up with Fisher House and Operation Homefront to support military families nationwide in an effort to help ease emotional and financial burdens military families face during the holidays. The initiative is called Walmart’s “Holiday Salute to Military Families” and it is intended to honor and support our veterans and service members who keep our country safe, as well as the military families who act as our heroes at home.
As part of this program, Walmart gave $2 million to Operation Homefront and Fisher House to help military families this holiday season. The grant to Fisher House will make it so loved ones can stay at a Fisher House while a service member is hospitalized without the added costly expense of a hotel stay. Additionally, Operation Homefront will be able to provide toys and meals to military families, and help 500 hundred active duty service members come home for the holidays to be reunited with their families.
What better way to honor our service members than to help support their families AND bring them home for the holidays? I am so proud to be working with such great organizations that are trying to make the holidays just a little brighter for the men and women who have done so much for us. My son Robert, a Marine, deploys to the Middle East in the spring and I’m grateful for programs like these that recognize the sacrifices made by both service members and their families.
What we can all do to help give back:
Through experiences with my own family, I know that how we spend our time with others can really make a difference. I hope this December you are able to spend time with your loved ones and also remember to try to help others in any way you can.
Here is one way to get involved and spread holiday cheer to military families locally and nationwide:
- Make a Donation of Your Own: Join the nationwide effort to salute our military this holiday season by visiting fisherhouse.org/Walmartto make a donation to Fisher House’s “Sponsor A Family” program or www.operationhomefront.net/walmart to support Operation Homefront.
I hope you all have a wonderful and safe holiday season!