Every November 11 in the United States, Americans pay tribute to veterans who have protected the country during times of conflict. The U.S. armed forces are made up of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, and Space Force.
Their all-volunteer force is one of the largest armies in the world. It is a long-standing American tradition to show our gratitude to those who have served. Whether they serve in peacetime or wartime, every service member chooses to serve their country and knows that at any time they may be asked to sacrifice everything, including their lives, to protect the country they call home.
Few groups deserve our recognition, respect, and gratitude more than the brave men and women who serve in the United States military. These men of integrity have sacrificed so much so that we can maintain our way of life. This November 11th, on Veterans Day, we are grateful to our veterans who have served so selflessly and courageously.
No matter where you live or how much time you have to spend, there are many ways to honor a veteran who spent his or her life protecting our values and democracy. Sometimes it seems hard to express gratitude to those who are often too proud to acknowledge their sacrifices. However, there are several meaningful ways to honor these warriors.
Fly the American flag
The American flag has many names, including the Stars and Stripes, Old Glory, the Red, White and Blue. This is the first of nine ways to honor veterans. This is a visual tribute to show your support. However, there are appropriate ways to fly the flag to show respect for it and the country. The American flag should always stand above other flags. It should hang horizontally or vertically with 50 stars (union) in the upper right corner.
Commit to volunteering
Finding meaningful volunteer opportunities is almost effortless thanks to the Internet. Search the Veterans and military family categories on VolunteerMatch to find a hospital, charity, or other organization near you that needs help!
Or contact your nearest VA hospital to see if there are opportunities to volunteer at the hospital or spend time with veterans there. Many VA hospitals hold events or ceremonies on Veterans Day, so ask if you can help at the event. Even just spending some time talking to the patient can help him/her have a great day.
Support established enterprises
When you support an established business, you are showing them the respect they have earned. You are also supporting your community. Many veterans start small businesses in the communities where they live. This means they also give back to the community by providing jobs, paying taxes and supporting local schools. When these businesses thrive, so does your community. Be sure to rave about their excellent service. Whether you give them five stars on their app, write reviews, invest in their business, or recommend them to friends, these are some of the best ways to show your support for an established business in addition to spending money.
The Census Bureau estimates that there are nearly 2.5 million veteran-owned businesses in the United States, nearly 10 percent of all businesses in the country. Find an established company near you and visit them immediately!
Businesses across the country are offering discounts on everything from a cup of coffee to service. It may not seem like much to honor veterans with a discount, but sometimes a little goes a long way. CouponBirds has put together a collection of veteran discounts, including deals for veterans from various industries.
Participate in service
Communities across the country hold Veterans Day events. These events could include parades, exhibits and speeches honoring veterans. Churches and other volunteer organizations also hold annual events to mark the day. Participating in these activities shows your appreciation for the veterans who have served.
Senior organizations support our heroes in many ways. They support our veterans by providing shelter when needed, providing services to wounded and disabled veterans, training service animals, and more. Your donations keep these organizations going. Consider donating to groups such as the Wounded Warrior Project or the USO, and encourage your friends and family to do the same.
Hire a veteran
Our veterans are some of the most well-trained and educated people you know. Hiring veterans gives them the opportunity to thrive in the civilian world and continue to raise their families. Veterans may have skills in technology, security, sales, health care, finance and more.
Whether directly or indirectly, everyone is connected to the men and women in uniform in some way. Let us not only recognize the sacrifices of our troops but thank them for all that they do.