On this Memorial Day, do something extra special with that heap of Groupon savings you've been burying in the backyard. If we can raise $2,000, the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) will host a community event for veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan in the Boston area. IAVA community functions are invaluable to this new generation of veterans. They provide a unique opportunity to connect with others who share similar experiences. Such connections are essential components in the process of reintegrating into civilian life. Donate as little as $1, or as much as you like, and together we can make sure this important IAVA event happens.
Since 2004, IAVA has been helping many of the 1.7 million troops who were deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan as they've returned home. Its nationwide events bring awareness to the problems veterans face, including mental health issues and difficulties claiming outdated GI Bill educational benefits. IAVA offers a forum for veterans to discuss and deal with issues surrounding the media portrayal and public perception of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars.
IAVA events offer a wonderful social setting for veterans to support each other. After the New York City Veterans Day parade in 2008, nearly 250 veterans, their families, and supporters went to Turtle Bay Bar and Grill for a meet-and-greet and MTV-sponsored musical performance. Just recently, 150 veterans, their friends, and families came together at a Washington DC restaurant as part of IAVA's Storm the Hill week of legislative lobbying on behalf of veteran rights. Dozens of attendees later emailed IAVA to express gratitude for helping them form connections that resulted in employment opportunities. Your dollars will help IAVA continue its progress in assisting veterans.
So on this Memorial Day, when America smells of hot dog (or soy product engineered to smell like hot dogs after reaching 140°F), we encourage you to take a second and donate to a great cause. Do some good today and help us reach that $2,000 goal so IAVA can help more veterans with another incredible event. You know it'll feel good to do your part. Get your Groupon!