Channeling the Holiday Spirit this Summer

Amidst the heat of the summer, an image of logs crackling in the fireplace and casting a glow on stockings hung above is probably the last thing to come to mind for most people. But for Operation Gratitude and our growing army of volunteers nationwide, the holiday spirit is always in our thoughts.

More Than Just a Hug

When I look back at my journey over the past 3 years and 8 months as the CEO of Operation Gratitude, the one thing that sticks out the most are the hugs.

They are etched in my memory forever — literally thousands of hugs at hundreds of service projects and community-building events — on too many trips, and in too many cities to count, from sea to shining sea.

Celebrating Christmas in July

For Operation Gratitude and our growing army of volunteers nationwide, the holiday spirit is in full swing this month as we celebrate Christmas in July! With the help of one million volunteers, our organization will continue to deliver care packages year-round as a physical representation of appreciation for our troops’ service and sacrifice.

We Are One

We are one, indivisible. Today we fight together as part of the greatest fighting force the world has ever known. Today we fight for freedom. I am sharing those words with you, our growing army of volunteers nationwide because you are the stars and stripes of Operation Gratitude.

OG is Everywhere

They marveled at our unprecedented impact during a global pandemic saying, “You truly made a difference everywhere!” And yet again, Operation Gratitude will be everywhere, leading a reemergence of hands-on, in person volunteer opportunities across the country.

The Meaning of Appreciation

In July, our unstoppable team and dedicated volunteers will assemble and ship Operation Gratitude’s signature “Christmas in July” Care Packages to 20,000 deployed Troops in more than 30 countries and U.S. Naval vessels globally.

Flag Day and Measuring Impact

I know the civilian-military divide may be unthinkable to some, but it is real. And while I’ve heard from a few volunteers that they were upset to learn an overwhelming majority of our troops and their families feel misunderstood, we must ask “what more can we DO about it?”

As we approach 9/11’s 20th anniversary, Operation Gratitude is redoubling our efforts to address this issue and taking steps to measure the impact of what we are DOING to solve it.

Catch Our Breath

While it’s important to occasionally take pause and appreciate what’s been accomplished, the opportunity to catch our breath could only be but a brief one. We choose to press on because our men and women in uniform can’t catch their breath either.