Editor's Note: Manasota Operation Troop Support, a nonprofit serving local troops deployed in the Middle East, is a beneficiary of several Legacy of Valor partner events.
Every month the warehouse at Manasota Operation Troop Support (MOTS) is steadily filled with razors, socks, candy, cookies, and more. These comfort items are gathered for local military troops deployed to the Middle East and other hot spots around the world. When people stop into the office for a visit they gaze at the walls of shelves full of food and products and the first question is usually, “Wow, where does this all come from?”
The answer is always the same and with a big smile on my face I say, “Our community.” Therein lies the power behind the success at MOTS, a grass-roots nonprofit. Many businesses, clubs and individuals make it all happen every single month.
Bealls Department Stores Partners with Realize Bradenton and MOTS
Bealls Department Stores, in connection with the Legacy of Valor Campaign and The Patterson Foundation, are giving local customers the opportunity to donate $2 at the checkout to MOTS until April 11. What better way to give our friends and family an easy way to give back to our military? This generous campaign will help support the work of MOTS, which includes sending monthly care packages to our local deployed troops.
MOTS also helps troops when they return home, and their families. Whether it’s for a son’s baseball camp that isn’t in the budget, a gas card to get to work until pay day, or funds to fix the washer that just broke down MOTS likes to say ”yes” whenever we can. This Bealls giving project will go a long way in providing some “necessaries” and some “extras” in the life of our hometown heroes and their families. Realize Bradenton is promoting the Legacy of Valor campaign in Bradenton with 19 patriotic events this spring, culminating with a USO-style song and dance show and multi-media event at McKechnie Field on April 12. Proceeds will be presented to MOTS during the celebration.
Walgreens Helps Our Community Give Back
Walgreens Stores support our military with a program where cashiers ask each customer who comes through the line if they would like to donate an item to the troops. It could be a candy bar, a bag of pistachios or perhaps gum. What a perfect way to give our friends and neighbors a way to support our troops on a personal basis. One question to a customer gives them the opportunity to make a difference in a soldier’s life.
Thinking of our troops at Sarasota-Bradenton Interntaional Airport
The Paradies Shops clerks at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport ask travelers who buy something at one of the gift shops if they would like to purchase something to be mailed to a deployed troop. They even have a basket at the register with a variety of items for ideas, such as Dunkin’ Donuts coffee, Advil, nail clippers, trail mix, snacks and personal care items. At first, customers can be surprised by the question, but then they often jump on the idea and happily give. Several passengers have said, ”I’ll buy the whole basket.”
Realize Bradenton is promoting the Legacy of Valor campaign with 19 patriotic events this spring, culminating with a USO-style song and dance show and multi-media event at McKechnie Field on April 12. Proceeds will be presented to MOTS during the celebration to continue the mission of service to military troops.
It all starts with an idea about filling a need. When the Girl Scouts learned how much troops love getting their annual boxes of Thin Mints and Savannah Cookies, they went out of their way to market their cookies to folks who couldn’t eat them to purchase them for a troop overseas. It has been overwhelmingly successful and our warehouse will have 400 boxes of Girl Scout cookies delivered this week to go into the next care packages. Churches call our office each month asking what we are low on in the warehouse. Local veteran’s clubs do the same. The Out of Door Academy donated new books for the children of troops at Christmas. Freedom Elementary School held a food drive to fill the MOTS warehouse, as did many other schools. School children write letters and draw pictures for the troops, too.
As director of MOTS, I am overwhelmed by the generosity of this community. And I am especially proud and thankful for all of the people who have worked on The Patterson Foundation’s Legacy of Valor campaign. I believe that their efforts have truly made this the “Year of the Veteran.” Providing so many people with so many venues and ways to relate and share their stories of freedom and valor with each other was a huge task. But I have seen it coming to fruition, and I am amazed by how far we have come in recognizing the greatness of our military heritage. I want to thank all of the businesses and friends and neighbors who offer of their time, talent, and support to keep our military and their families in our hearts each day.
Learn about these and other concepts used in TPF's approach to philanthropy.
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