Veteran’s Day is a federal holiday celebrated on November 11th. On this day we acknowledge and honor the veterans that have served in the Armed Forces of the United States – not to be confused with Memorial Day, in which we honor those who have lost their lives in service.
Traditionally, Americans will seek out ways to honor veterans. Whether by assisting them directly or donating to an institution, there are many ways to help out depending on your availability!
“Good, better, best. Never let it rest. 'Til your good is better and your better is best." – St. Jerome
One of the easiest ways to make a difference on Veteran’s Day is by donating to organizations that help veterans. You can go straight to a local one that you already know or search online for one that’s nearby – you can donate to basically anywhere in the country, but it’s only common sense to donate to your local community!
Donating is a great alternative if you want to help but find yourself without time in your hands to get more directly involved. Organizations and institutions can always use a helping hand, and donations are always welcomed.
Here’s a short list of organizations you can donate to on Veteran’s Day:
- Air Warrior Courage Organization
- Disabled American Veterans
- Homes For Our Troops
- Operation Write Home
- Honor Flight Network
- Soldier’s Angels
- Wounded Warrior Project
You can find more organizations at Charity Navigator.
Listen to a veteran
It’s not uncommon for veterans to have little to no family nearby (or even alive in some cases). Veterans Day is the perfect opportunity to show up and lend your ear to a veteran — they’ll surely have interesting stories to tell!
But even just a casual chat is enough to make a veteran’s day. Go to a local organization and spend an afternoon with a veteran. Might seem like a simple gesture, but it will be greatly appreciated.
Besides, this could be a nice opportunity to teach children about veterans and have them interact by asking questions too.
If you find yourself short on time and not in a comfortable financial situation to donate, consider writing a letter to a veteran. Ask around a local organization for the names and background of veterans and write a letter to one of them – and if you can, encourage other people you know to do the same.
Again, a simple gesture, but sometimes all we need to keep us going is a small act of kindness. Even if you can only do a little for someone else, a little is already enough for them!
Offer to help
If you want to get more directly involved, consider offering your services to a local veteran. For example, you can help by going to the market for them (deeply appreciated this year because of the pandemic), run small errands, and pick them up by car when needed.
By reaching out to local veterans you can surely find other ways to help – as mentioned before, it’s not unlikely for them to have little family nearby and sometimes they’re not available. Be a friend, they always need one!
Fly a flag
A simple but respectable gesture that reminds your fellow countrymen of their patriotic duties. However, you should be aware of general etiquette for how to correctly fly the american flag.
Here’s how to correctly fly a flag:
- The union (blue) should always be at the peak of the pole, of if the flag is hanging from a window the union should be on the upper left corner
- The flag should never be pointing down
- Never let it touch the ground
If you want to know more, check our guide on flag etiquette!