Operation Homefront provides emergency financial and other assistance to the families of our service members and wounded warriors.

A local 501(c)3 non profit organization
Combined Federal Campaign # 23189

Operation Homefront-Florida Website

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Operation Homefront Florida to Distribute BRAIVE funds in Gulf Coast area

Operation Homefront-FL announced today that the Gulf Coast Community Foundation of Venice awarded Operation Homefront-Florida a $60,000 grant to provide emergency financial and food assistance to service members and veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. The source of the funds is the Florida BRAIVE fund, a 5 million dollar fund established in 2008. Operation Homefront-Florida will distribute BRAIVE funds throughout 2010 to military service members and their families in a 25-county area of central and southwest Florida. “These funds come at a crucial time. Requests for emergency assistance are steadily increasing as Florida faces the largest deployment since the 1940’s,” says Simone Hoover, Chapter President of Operation Homefront-Florida. To apply for assistance or find out how to support Operation Homefront-Florida visit www.operationhomefront.net/florida or call 888-390-0843.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

For those who support our military

Written by a US Service member, currently stationed in Afghanistan

Among the terrible things I have seen and the mental stress this deployment has brought me, a few shining lights of hope have come through the fog of war.  What I speak of are the wonderful men and women who take the time to send their love and support to people they have never met.  They do this for no other reason than to show that they have heart.  These wonderful people bring smiles into not just my life, but to most of the 70,000 troops in Afghanistan today.

We don't ask for much.  I myself tell my own wife that she sends me too many packages.

We think of home all the time and the people we love.  We spend every minute of every day wishing we were home amongst our loved ones.  We wait for hours just to talk to our families for minutes.  I have been on four deployments now, and by far this is the hardest on me.  Not because I'm exposed to enemy fire.  Not because I'm struggling physically.  I've been in those situations and they do not even come close to the pain I feel from being away from my wife.

The only respite I get from the violence and horrors of war are the heartwarming letters and gifts that I receive from not only my family, but from total strangers who reach out and make our lives just a little bit less miserable.  They have a special gift.  That gift is empathy.  They look at things from our perspective and react the only way they know how.  They show us that America is still the best place in the world to live.  They show us that our country will support us, no matter what.  This was not always the case in our history.  I feel for the Vietnam veterans who came home to be spit on by the very people they swore to protect with their lives.  If they had the same support that my generation has, many of them would have had an easier adjustment to civilian life.  In my time in the military, I have known nothing but a nation at war.  I have been on the receiving end of enemy fire many times and have been decorated by my nation for the bravery I've shown on the battlefield. In my heart, I know that those of you that take the time to make just a little bit of difference in our lives, you are the heroes.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

4000 Additional Active Duty for Florida

Christy Campbell
Operation Homefront-Florida North Florida Manager

Here in Jacksonville, it was on every news station. Congressman Ander Crenshaw and Senator Bill Nelson announced that Congress had finally signed off on making Mayport Naval Station in Jacksonville, FL the new home for one of Norfolk’s 5 nuclear carriers.  The carrier will probably not arrive until 2012, but when it does it will bring almost 4000 additional service members and their families to the Jacksonville area.  It’s hard to believe, but in the next 5 years preparations for the arrival will require nearly a half of a billion dollars in upgrades and changes to the Mayport pier and St Johns River.  The carrier will definitely be a positive boost for Jacksonville’s economy. 

It made me think, for Operation Homefront-Florida, the addition of the nuclear carrier will certainly have an impact as well.    What was once a deployment of a few hundred sailors at a time will now be an exodus of 4000, with their respective families waiting at home.  As Operation Homefront chapters in Virginia, California, and Washington all support larger Naval deployments, Operation Homefront-Florida will be ready to provide support to these military families.  Although the state of Virginia is probably unhappy to lose one of its carriers, I know that Operation Homefront-Florida will welcome the 4000 sailors and their families to Florida.  As our chapter continues to grow, I look forward to the carrier coming to Jacksonville and the opportunity to support these families.  

This writer works for the Florida chapter of Operation Homefront, Inc., a 501 (c ) 3 organization supporting  military families and wounded warriors.