ARLINGTON, Va., Oct. 13, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The USO, whose mission is to strengthen service members by keeping them connected to family, home and country, launches its holiday campaign, #USOHolidays, with a first-ever care package event in conjunction with Warner Bros. Entertainment.
A team of volunteers from Warner Bros. along with studio staff and talent will assemble 3,000 holiday care packages today, which will then be distributed to service members deployed in Southwest Asia, Europe and the Pacific. Warner Bros. has a history of supporting our nation's service members by participating in USO tours. Most recently, this summer, stars from "Black Lightning" and "The Flash" joined DC artists and writers in bringing Batman and Warner Bros. Television talent to military members stationed in Kuwait.
"Often times, a USO center or USO programming is the closest sense of home our service members can experience while separated from family and serving around the world during the holidays," said Lisa Anastasi, USO chief development and marketing officer. "Through these holiday care packages, we are bringing a touch of home to the doorsteps of America's troops and expressing the country's gratitude for their sacrifices at this special time of year."
In September, USO partners Prudential and FedEx each hosted holiday care package events with their employees and provided in-kind items for the care packages. This year's USO holiday gift bags also include in-kind items from the Jeep® Brand, The Kroger Company, Procter & Gamble and USAA.
In addition to the USO's ongoing programming that strengthens troops through connection to the things they hold dear, USO centers also host festive holiday programming for service members and military families to bring cheer and remind them of holiday traditions. From holiday meals to family fun activities like making gingerbread houses and enjoying movie nights with hot cocoa, USO locations hosted more than 700 holiday events last year.
The #USOHolidays campaign will run through December. Here are three key ways military supporters can help make the holidays special for our men and women in uniform:
- Give a Gift for Good: Through USO Wishbook, military supporters can purchase symbolic gifts for friends and loved ones that help America's service members and their families. The online alternative giving catalog offers a way to support the USO by donating toward gifts for good that keep service members connected to the things they hold dear. Visit USO.org/Holidays to review the Wishbook products and give a gift for good today.
- Be the Force, a Fundraising Force: Join in #USOHolidays by hosting a Facebook Fundraiser to rally friends, family and communities to support the USO's mission. Whether it's a holiday, birthday, anniversary or in honor of a service member or military family you know, military supporters can pick any day to make a difference and kick off a fundraiser. Learn more about setting up a Facebook Fundraiser for the USO here.
- Send a Greeting to our Troops: Visit USO.org/FORCE to select or write your own message of thanks today, and your note will be distributed in USO centers around the world.
Key USO events within the campaign include:
Backstage at the USO: On November 14, the USO will take over The Wharf in Washington, D.C., with a public-facing care package event and entertainment. In the evening, the USO will host a variety show at The Anthem with Wilmer Valderrama and other performers to honor and celebrate our Armed Forces. More than 1,000 service members and military leadership are anticipated to attend to enjoy the show and gain a backstage look at USO programs and services.
USO Chairman's Tour 2019: This annual holiday tour will take place in November this year and will be the first for Gen. Mark Milley who was named chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in July. In addition to USO and military leadership, the tour will include several entertainers and celebrities who put on a unique show and meet and greet opportunities with troops. Gen. Milley will spend time with service members on a weeklong trip visiting seven bases in multiple countries. As a signature event during the holiday season, this tour brings joy, laughter and the comforts of home to service members when they are feeling separated from home the most.
To learn more about the #USOHolidays campaign, visit USO.org/Holidays.
About the USO:
The USO strengthens America's military service members by keeping them connected to family, home and country, throughout their service to the nation. At hundreds of locations worldwide, we are united in our commitment to connect our service members and their families through countless acts of caring, comfort and support. The USO is a private nonprofit organization, not a government agency. Our programs, services and entertainment tours are made possible by the American people, support of our corporate partners and the dedication of our volunteers and staff. To join us in this important mission and to learn more about the USO, please visit USO.org or follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.