Be The One – Giving Challenge 2016

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How can you “Be The One” to make a difference in a Veteran’s Life?

At Operation Second Chance, we meet Veteran’s with unique stories each day.  Despite the differing tales, there is always one overarching theme; though their time at war is over, a new battle has begun – a fight for their homes, their family, and their sanity.  Many of our American heroes struggle to adjust to civilian life, and find themselves living in poverty or facing homelessness.  We strive to meet all the requests of our veterans whether they need help with a mortgage or rent payment, or a weekend getaway.  However, we couldn’t help any of our heroes without the support and generosity of The Community Foundation of Sarasota, the Patterson Foundation, and you, our donors.

How does it make you feel to know you could “Be The One” to bring a smile to a veteran facing an unbelievable amount of stress.  With a donation to Operation Second Chance during this year’s Giving Challenge, you can help keep the lights on in a Veteran’s home, make sure their children always have something to eat, or even give a family a much needed retreat, like the 2015 Giving Challenge helped us do for the Roberson family.

“I have spent half [of] my daughter’s lives away from them in Afghanistan and training,” SFC Roberson wrote us.  After losing a leg in battle and spending a year at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) recovering, SFC Roberson elected to stay in the Army and reenlisted for 8 years. “I was the first amputee to graduate from the Army Air Assault School,” he went on to tell us before sharing that he deployed to Afghanistan 2 additional times.  His only request – help him get some long overdue family time with this wife, and 2 daughters who had never been to the beach; so the sunny shores of Sarasota, Florida was where they were going!

Being able to provide some much needed R&R for this veteran and his family was made possible by those of you in Sarasota who support us day in, and day out.  But they’re not the only ones who benefited from your generosity during last year’s giving challenge.  Veteran Chad D. was also able to experience beautiful Sarasota, and enjoy some relaxing deep see fishing.

“Life at the Walter Reed can get rough at times with everything we go through in our process to heal and get home to our lives and families,” Chad wrote us.  “My life was absolutely chaotic when the trip came up so it was a needed break.  The things that these guys do for us to help us get out of our own ways are IMMEASURABLE.  They took me out of here, sent me down to the beach, let me do some fishing and relax.  I met some amazing people, had a blast hanging out with everyone I met or knew, and was able to forget about recovery for a few days.”

These are two, out of hundreds of, stories showing the impact that the Community Foundation of Sarasota’s 2015 Giving Challenge has made for our Veterans.  What will you help make possible for our veterans during this year’s Giving Challenge?  How will you “Be The One?”