There are over 19 million veterans in the US—men and women who sacrificed their time and safety to fight for our country. As a nation, we honor them on Veterans Day, but is one day per year enough?
No—we think we should honor veterans all the time, as they are amazing people who fought for our country. Luckily, there are plenty of easy and thoughtful ways that this can be done.
To learn more, keep reading to find six caring and genuine ways to honor veterans in your community.
1. Say Thank You
If you’re wondering how to honor veterans, one of the simplest and easiest ways is to say thank you. Thank them for their time and service to the country, something few are willing to do.
Are there any veterans in your workplace or do you have any veteran neighbors? If so, take some time to check on them, especially if they’re elderly or living alone.
Why not bring them a homemade cake or cup of coffee and spend a bit of time with them, asking them how their day was and how they’re feeling? It’s a simple act that can make a huge difference, letting the veteran in your life know how much you care about them.
Or, if you own a local business, why not offer a special discount for veterans or put up a sign, thanking them for their service?
2. Support a Business Owned By Veterans
After military service, many veterans go on to open their own businesses. As any small business owner knows, it can be a huge challenge to run your own company, with so much competition out there.
A great way to support and honor veterans is by shopping at businesses that they own. It’s a nice way of saying thanks and helping them financially.
Do you know which businesses in your town are owned by veterans? If not, a great thing to do is compile a list, then share it on your neighborhood Facebook group, encouraging others to shop there as well.
3. Proudly Fly the Flag
Honoring our veterans can also be done by flying the flag. Whether it’s on your front porch or outside your business, proudly flying the American flag will let veterans know that you’re thinking of them.
Honoring the flag means knowing how to fly it correctly. The US flag should never be flown upside down or when ripped or tattered, and you also don’t want to fly any other flag above it.
While most people tag their flag down in the evening, it’s ok to fly it 24/7, as long as the flag is illuminated at night. You can also fly the flag at half-mast out of respect if someone in the community has passed away.
4. Donate Your Time
If you have even a few hours to spare each month, why not donate your time to help veterans? There are a large number of charities that work with veterans, or VA hospitals are often looking for visitors and volunteers to help out.
Often, veterans need extra help assimilating back into society, or need additional care due to injuries sustained during their service. By donating your time, you can make a positive impact on veterans in your community, which they’re sure to appreciate.
To get started, search for charities in your area and give them a call. If you’re not able to volunteer your time, a financial donation is always helpful as well.
5. Teach Your Children
If you’re a parent or teacher, one great thing you can do is to teach your children about veterans and Veterans Day. Help them learn what a veteran is and why they’re such an important person in society.
Why not take your children to a history museum, helping them learn more about US history and the role of veterans? Or, you could even encourage kids to write letters or make cards that can be sent to a local VA hospital.
If you’re a teacher, can you organize for a local veteran to visit your school and talk to students? That way, they can learn more about careers in the military and also learn more about what it’s like to be a veteran.
6. Host a Workplace Event
Can you host an event in your workplace on Veterans Day? This can be a special way to raise awareness, or you could also set up a workplace fundraiser to support a veteran’s group.
See if you can set up a morning tea, getting staff together for a moment of silence, reflecting on those who served and suffered for their country.
Often, workplaces will match employer donations, which can help you double your fundraising.
At a bare minimum, it’s nice to wear a poppy or American flag lapel pin on your blazer or suit, letting others know that you support and care about veterans.
Honor Veterans With These Thoughtful Ideas
With so many amazing ways to honor veterans, there’s no excuse not to! It’s easy to take our freedoms and liberties for granted, but the reality is they are due to the sacrifices made by veterans.
Make a pact with yourself to honor veterans each day, not just on Veterans Day! It’s a beautiful way to show them how much you care—and how much this amazing country means to you.
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