It’s Veterans Day—what are you doing to observe it?
If you’re like me, you’ve sent a couple messages to your friends and family members who have served. You might schedule a post on your organization’s social channels. But what can you do to honor veterans after Veterans Day?
We’ve got some ideas!
Spotlight Their Service… After You’ve Asked Them
Veterans Day is a day set aside especially for thanking service members. If you’ve got a Veteran on your staff, board, or volunteer group, thank them publicly for their service.
Not all people like sharing their stories or being in the spotlight. This is true for Veterans, too! Some Vets are happy to talk about their time in the military. Others aren’t. Make sure anyone you publicly recognize knows about it ahead of time and is comfortable with what you’ll say. This is a good rule of thumb for all people, but especially for Veterans!
Make Sure Your Organization is Veteran-Friendly
If you’ve never served in the military, you’ve never experienced the transition from military life to civilian life. Luckily, there are tons of resources out there that can help you make sure you’re well-prepared to work effectively with Veterans. One of those resources is SAVI Vets, a nonprofit (and Qgiv partner!) that focuses on helping Veterans transition into civilian life. They’ve got a ton of practical advice about how to recognize service, offer constructive criticism and regular feedback, and more.
You can read more about how to make your office Vet-friendly here, or you can head over to this article on aligning your brand to welcome transitioning service-members. Then, evaluate whether or not your organization is set up to help Vets succeed after their time in the military.
If you’ve already got Veterans on your staff, SAVI has some great articles about how to understand your Veteran employees. If you don’t, they’ve also got lots of content around facts you might not know about Veterans.
Partner with Veteran-Owned Organizations
If you’re passionate about supporting Veterans, explore partnerships with Vet-owned businesses or other nonprofits that are focused on Veteran support. Whether you team up with a Vet-focused agency in your area to raise money together or find Vet-owned vendors for your next event, your partnership will help the Veteran community. Spending money at those businesses helps your local economy, too—it’s a win/win situation for everyone who’s involved!
If a Veteran-focused organization is operating in your community, consider scheduling time to volunteer with them.
Ask How to Get Involved
The most effective way to honor Vets is to go straight to the source: ask the Veterans you know how you can honor them in a constructive, meaningful way. They might come up with answers you never anticipated!
What are you doing to honor Vets this year?