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Opportunities for Loved Ones of the Fallen

Return to Loved Ones of the Fallen Resource Directory - LINK
Additional camp opportunities for Gold Star children may be found HERE

Scroll down to learn more about these resources:
Vacations, camps, resorts, retreats, theme parks, events, tickets
Support for programs for surviivng spouses & children
Wishes granted

Vacations, camps, resorts, retreats, theme parks, events, tickets

Active Valor (San Diego, CA)
Active Valor is a combat veteran run non-profit organization in San Diego, CA dedicated to giving new purpose to veterans by pairing them as mentors to children of our nation’s fallen heroes, referred to as Gold Star Children.

Valor Adventures is our program that pairs veterans one-on-one as mentors to children of our nation’s fallen military heroes, referred to as Gold Star Children. Together, they participate in specially designed mission-based adventures that develop their creativity, communication skills, confidence levels, problem solving abilities, and most importantly, allows them to just be a kid for the day. Each adventure is based around different hands-on skill sets that allow our veteran mentors to truly give back to this community. 

American Widow Project
The American Widow Project lists various events:
  • AWP Get-Aways
  • Days of Honor
  • Tours
  • Speaking Engagements
  • Conventions
  • Other Events

America's Mighty Warriors (Surprise, AZ)
As a Gold Star Mother herself, Debbie has a special connection to the families of the fallen. Through the Heroes Hope Home in Arizona and opportunities to attend retreats, concerts and events for the families, AMW gives hope, respite, encouragement and resiliency. We reach out to the entire immediate family of the fallen; parent’s, siblings, spouse, and children. These families have given their very best. We owe it to them to never forget their heroes or the sacrifices made.

Through Gold Star Respite, families of the fallen are invited to stay at the Heroes Hope Home in Arizona or attend one of several retreats held through out the year. Extended families are welcome to the Heroes Hope Home so parents, grandparents and siblings can join spouses and children of the fallen for some much deserved respite, relaxation and rejuvenation.
At retreats, families have the time to reflect and relax and have some fun with other families who share a special bond because that cannot be explained. Counseling and group sessions are available for those who wish to participate.

The Heroes Hope Home -- The Heroes Hope Home was established in 2009 to provide a positive, peaceful and enriching environment for families of the fallen. It is a place of hope, love and rejuvenation, where all those who stay understand that to forget is just not an option.

The HHH welcomes families of the fallen for a week stay. Visits are carefully planned and customized based on the needs and wants of the individual families. We believe that families should be free to rejuvenate, have fun, have access to therapy, or do nothing.
The way you spend your time is up to you. Just let us know your goals for your visit and we will take care of the rest!

A Soldier's Child - Force on Force
This event presents ASC children with the opportunity to showcase their fishing skills on World Fishing Network (WFN) Army Bass Anglers "Force on Force" cable television show.

A Soldier's Child - Hunter Safety Course
Enroll a child between the ages of 10 and 16 for ASC's Hunter Safety Course. This weekend camping retreat gives ASC kids the opportunity to become certified by the TWRA, make friends, and receive mentoring. This free event aims to provide a safe and encouraging environment for ASC children to heal and grow.

A Soldier's Child - Journey Camp
This annual 7-day camp has been held during the week of July 4th. Journey Camp provides a means for adventure, relationship building and healing. ASC campers receive mentorship to seek inner healing and restoration, embark on journeys in pursuit of adventure, and build meaningful relationships. (Ages of 9-16)

A Soldier's Child - PS23
A Soldier's Child's PS23 leadership weekends are for young ASC adults between the ages of 16-25. This 3-day retreat focuses on Christian principles and values as they relate to the career paths of young adults. PS23 graduates are trained to help facilitate Journey Camp for younger campers and serve as peer mentors.

A Soldier's Child - White Tail Deer Hunt
One of ASC's many mini-camps, the White Tail Deer Hunt Minicamp helps ASC kids understand the importance of wildlife conservation, create bonds with mentors and one another, and to appreciate natural resources.

Band of Runners Trail Camp - (November)
​The mission of Band of Runners Trail Camp is to empower veterans and their surviving family members by sharing the community of trail running and the physical and psychological benefits running in nature provides.

Billy Graham Center at the Cove (Asheville, NC)
FREE Gold Star Wives RetreatPast, Present, and Future with Michael and Cindy Easley, July 31 - August 2, 2020
The pain of the past can steal the joy of the present—and rob us of hope. Come contemplate God’s Word, find comfort in the arms of Jesus Christ and be assured that He deeply cares for you and your future. Clearly identify your past, own your present, and begin making plans with newfound freedom.

Boulder Crest Retreat (Bluemont, VA)
We deliver free, short-duration, high-impact combat-related stress recovery retreats for combat veterans (male and female), couples, families, caregivers and Gold Star families, known as PATHH (Progressive and Alternative Training for Healing Heroes).

Brat Pack 11
Brat Pack 11 is an organization founded by Kenzie Hall to show honor and gratitude to our nation’s youngest boots on the ground. Brat Pack 11 is dedicated to supporting the children of our wounded and fallen heroes by providing them with unforgettable experiences and connecting them with a network for continued support throughout their childhood.

Bravehearts Veterans Retreats (Illinois)
BraveHearts hosts weekend retreats throughout the year at our peaceful and picturesque farm in Harvard. The retreats are geared towards veterans who have experienced combat related trauma, military sexual trauma, veteran couples and Gold Star families. (Gold Star families are invited to participate in our programs. We have offered retreats in the past, but do have any scheduled yet for 2019. We will collect a list of those who are interested in a retreat and work on developing a retreat weekend.)

During the retreats, veterans are able to utilize experiences with horses and group process to gain to mastery, life skills and healing while spending time with other veterans. The horses and Bravehearts environment enable veterans who have endured profound psychological wounds to make strides that often take years to actualize sitting in a room engaged in psychotherapy.

The retreats are facilitated by Vet Center counselors. Participants are housed at BraveHearts with communal meals provided. Expert staff and volunteers provide activities with horses. Opportunities to participate in meditation, group discussions and free time are often included. Grooming, leading, riding, carriage driving and foundation horsemanship are some of the equine activities used.

Camp Bliss (Walker, MN)
September 20-22, 2019: Gold Star Weekend
Details - LINK
Camp Bliss is an incredible retreat and vacation destination in Walker, Minnesota.

Camp Bliss is part of Independent Lifestyles, Inc., a non-profit organization committed to providing independence and choices for people with disabilities, their families and communities. Founded in 1997, we have provided services to thousands of people throughout Central Minnesota and beyond. Retreats are available to veterans and people with disabilities, while others are open to the general public. The public retreats and private rentals help us offset the cost of providing retreats for veterans and people with disabilities at low or no cost. We are located in beautiful Walker, MN on 48 forested acres between 3 scenic lakes. Our 7,600 sq. ft. lodge is totally accessible, with 7 bedrooms & 4 bathrooms, the Bliss House also accessible with 3,500 sq. ft., 7 bedrooms & 4 bathrooms, just 200 feet from the lake and we have quaint 500 sq. ft. Cabin overlooking the lake with 1 bedroom & a loft which has a nice sandy beach just steps away.

Camp Corral
The mission of Camp Corral is to transform the lives of children of wounded, injured, ill, and fallen military heroes by providing a unique summer camp experience.

Camp Erin
Camp Erin is the largest national bereavement program for youth grieving the death of a significant person in their lives.

Children and teens ages 6-17 attend a transformational weekend camp that combines traditional, fun camp activities with grief education and emotional support, free of charge for all families. Led by grief professionals and trained volunteers, Camp Erin provides a unique opportunity for youth to increase levels of hope, enhance self-esteem, and especially to learn that they are not alone.

Camp Erin is offered in every Major League Baseball city as well as additional locations across the U.S. and Canada. Eluna partners with hospices and bereavement organizations to bring hope and healing to thousands of grieving children and teens each year.

Camp Hometown Heroes (Grafton, WI)
Camp Hometown Heroes is a national free week-long overnight summer camp for children and siblings between the ages of seven to seventeen of fallen U.S. service members who died in any manner: combat, accident, illness or suicide.

Camp Life!
Camp Life! is a non-profit connecting families of fallen heroes through a summer camp experience providing encouragement, inspiration and adventure.

Champion Kids Camp (Houston, TX)
Champions Kids Camp is dedicated to the nurturing of children who have survived a traumatic injury, illness, or personal loss, such as the loss of a parent or sibling. Through a week-long camp consisting of music, art, sports, recreation and special guests, children are nurtured physically, mentally and emotionally.

Children of Wounded Warriors (Grants for extra-curricular activities)
The child sacrifices and suffers the loneliness of having a parent away in service for months at a time. Many of these families find themselves in a financial hardship and simply cannot afford to pay for the sports, cheerleading, or other nurturing activities. Children of Wounded Warriors is very aware of the distance between the families and the difficulty it is for these families to find financial support in their local communities. We make our grants available to all of the American families no matter where they reside so their children can enjoy activities that enrich their spiritual and emotional being.

Christian Warriors Retreat - (Goliad, TX)
Christian Warriors Retreat provides a Christian retreat for veterans and first responders. Also, in the future we will be providing a veteran and first responders wives and Gold Star wives retreat by other veteran and Gold Star wives. 

Collier House (Clark, WY)
Sandra Barcus, the mother of Collier Barcus, had a dream to provide a safe, comfortable home where surviving families of military members who were killed in active duty defending their great country can heal from the trauma, stress and grief in their lives. In order to make Collier’s dream to “make a difference” a reality, Sandy and her family set out to create a cabin where families could come together to rest, reflect and remember their loved ones.

Colors of Heroes Foundation (Rosebush, MI)
Colors of Heroes is a nonprofit foundation dedicated to rebuilding confidence for combat wounded veterans and gold star families through new relationships and outdoor adventures. 

Comfort Zone Camp
Comfort Zone Camp is a nonprofit bereavement organization that transforms the lives of children who have experienced the death of a parent, sibling, or primary caregiver. Our programs are free of charge and include confidence building activities and age-based support groups that break the emotional isolation grief often brings. Comfort Zone's programs are offered to children ages 5-25, and their families for the family programs. Held year-round across the country, our primary locations are California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Virginia (HQ). We also partner with organizations to serve their local or specific communities through our Partnership and Community by Design Programs.

Edelweiss Lodge and Resort Survivor Package (Germany)
The Edelweiss Lodge and Resort is proud to offer programs and discounts honoring Survivors from all services. Our Fallen Warriors have paid the ultimate sacrifice and their families deserve our respect, gratitude and the very best we can provide. The Armed Forces Recreation Centers Survivors' Family Program provides a 50% discount from the normal room rates and extends to family members and sponsored guests accompanying authorized users.

English River Outfitters (Washington, IA, adjacent Sockum Ridge)
English River Outfitters is part of the healing process for veterans. Our priority is to help foster a healthy readjustment back to civilian life through a positive outdoor experience.

Veterans and families served at English River Outfitters experience a variety of therapeutic, group-based activities designed to re-establish confidence, hope, and health. In addition to our weekend retreats for veterans, we also hold special programs to serve children from Gold Star families, as well as ladies-only veteran camp-out events.

What Makes English River Outfitters different? We believe there is healing in nature, and therefore we emphasize an outdoor experience where veterans can fish, hunt, and hike in the woodlands surrounding our facilities. Veterans with physical disabilities are able to participate fully using our all-terrain wheelchairs. The veterans we serve participate in sporting activities that challenge and empower them, all while immersed in Iowa's natural, refreshing wilderness.

Fallen Heroes Family Camp (Springfield, TN)
Fallen Heroes Family Camp is a special place where the families of fallen heroes can come together, find joy and respite, solace and support, while enjoying common interests. Through the use of horses and outdoor activities, Fallen Heroes Family Camp strives to help military families shed their feelings of loss and put them on a road to healing. Here, they can take steps to gain focus on life again.

FAVE Boating Expeditions (Ruskin, FL)
Our boating trips offer a variety of boating excursions for our veterans, military service members and Gold Star families whose life has been touched and forever changed by the death of a Fallen Warrior. Our goal is to honor, support and promote healing of the mind and spirit in a relaxed environment.

Freedom Hunters - Hunting and fishing
Gold Star families know the full price of freedom and hold a special place in our hearts. Through retreats and individual opportunities, our goal is to make sure those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice are never forgotten.

Gold Star Family Weekend, Inc. (Little Falls, MN)
In recognition of our military fallen heroes from all wars and their families, the Gold Star Family Weekend, Inc. is honored to invite families of our Military fallen heroes to a weekend of camaraderie, fun, and sharing. 

We invite families of military fallen from all wars (Iraq, Afghanistan, Desert Storm, Vietnam, Korea, WWII and the conflicts in-between) to be our guests for an amazing weekend planned exclusively for you and your family at Camp Ripley near Little Falls, Minnesota. 

Camp Ripley is a 53,000 acre regional training facility for our military, federal, state, local and civilian communities.  Camp Ripley relies on its expertise in environmental stewardship to maintain its training resources. The staff at Camp Ripley have opened their gates to our families for this special weekend.

Gold Star Parents Retreat (Carry the Load) (Texas)
A retreat created especially for Gold Star parents by Gold Star parents. The mission of the Gold Star Parents Retreat is to create a place where Texas Gold Star parents can gather and share their stories, laughter, and tears with each other with no judgment.

Gold Star Peak (Eagle River, AK)
Gold Star Peak, Inc. is a team of Gold Star families, veterans, service members and their families, that have all seen the devastation that combat has brought from the battlefields to our homes and communities. The organization was formed in direct response to the growing number of individuals and families that continue to struggle from the effects associated with years of continued combat service.

We are an Alaska based non-profit organization that connects veterans and Gold Star family members together in nature, assisting with their overall healing and grieving process. We work independently or through fiscal partnerships with local and national organizations with similar visions.

Our goal is to offer a setting in the outdoors bringing healing to all as well as empowering each to become thriving members within their families and communities.

Gold Star Teen Adventures (Fayetteville, NC)
Gold Star Teen Adventures provides unique year round outdoor adventure programs for the surviving youth of those who have lost their lives in the line of duty. The purpose of the program is to provide healing, mentorship, leadership development, and unique and challenging adventure opportunities. The program serves youth of all branches of military service, law enforcement and other designated first responders, and designated government agencies.

Good Grief Camps (TAPS and USO)
TAPS Good Grief Camp for children and teens provides a safe and supportive atmosphere to conduct activities and opportunities to learn coping skills, establish and identify support systems and create awareness that they are not alone in the grief of their loved one. Children and teens meet others of their own age group to share and learn, together. 

Got Your Back Network
Widows and children are given the opportunity free of costs to experience events that they would probably never have had the ability to do.

Guide On Leadership Camps
Guide On supports the families of fallen American military heroes. We provide leadership training and outdoor experience to children who have lost their adult role models. Guide On is an organization where children who have been affected by the loss of a military parent will be provided with leadership and skills training along with peers who have shared similar experiences. Professional staff will provide the leadership training, oversight and support for children attending Guide On Leadership Camps.

Holbrook Farms Retreat - Survivors of Heroes Retreats (Detroit Lakes, MN)
Survivors of Heroes Retreats are hosted at Holbrook Farms in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. Holbrook Farms Retreat, Inc. is a nonprofit charity dedicated to providing all-expense paid wellness getaways for military widows and families who have lost their loved ones in military service. The experience provides survivors an opportunity to get away and spend time with those who have gone through similar tragedies, helping them through their healing process.

Hope for Warriors Outdoor Adventure Program
Hope For The Warriors® Outdoor Adventures Program provides adaptive opportunities for wounded heroes to participate in sporting activities in the great outdoors. Service members, who previously embraced an outdoorsman lifestyle, as well as those new to wilderness sports, are introduced to recreational opportunities on the road to recovery.

Hope For The Warriors® created the Outdoor Adventures Program in 2010 to provide adaptive opportunities for wounded heroes to participate in sporting activities in the great outdoors. In 2012, the organization recognized the therapeutic benefits for the family members and expanded the program to include spouses and children of wounded and fallen service members.

House in the Woods, Inc (Lee, Maine)
A free, outdoor self-help program which remains flexible to the needs of those whom we serve. The only expense to participants is their transportation to Lee, Maine. Using the recreational, therapeutic, and educational properties of Maine’s great wilderness and outdoor heritage, we form short-term retreats for participants to meet others with common military-related challenges and experiences. Activities are led by licensed Maine guides and staffed with caring volunteers and assistance from the local VA Center and health professionals from the community upon request. Maine is a four season climate, so activities will be dependent on weather and availability.

Iowa Remembers Annual Retreat (Iowa)
Iowa Remembers is a non-profit charity run solely by volunteers. Founded in 2010 our primary objective is remembering and honoring Iowa’s military casualties of war from Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation New Dawn. Iowa Remembers is located in Grimes, Iowa.

Iowa Remembers sponsors and funds the Annual Retreat for Iowa Families of Fallen Service Members which is hosted and organized by Iowa Survivor Outreach Services.

Kids of our Heroes - Adventure Camp (Aurora, MO)
The mission of Kids of our Heroes Adventure Camp is to help children (ages 11-17) of our heroes to develop the coping skills of courage, confidence, and resiliency to overcome the fears and challenges of living with and rising above the injury or loss of a parent or family member who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation.

Knights of Heroes
Knights of Heroes hosts families with common losses allowing them to share experiences and build relationships while increasing public awareness and ensuring that families with losses are not forgotten with the passage of time.  KOH empowers children who have lost their fathers in service to our nation by providing positive adult mentorship, character development, and lasting friendships, forged during an annual wilderness adventure camp. 

Leap of Faith (Operation Support Our Troops - America)
Leap of Faith is a three day seminar and healing experience based on the idea that those families of fallen service members could live life fully and in a way that honors the life of their service member, despite there terrible loss.

Michigan Challenge (Northport, MI)
Our mission is to provide traditional sail training as developed by Tall Ships America.  Our focus clientele is Gold Star Teens (children of fallen military heroes), veterans and their families, and grieving youth. The experience will include team building, leadership, and character building in a fun, healing environment. Sailors will also have the opportunity to develop enduring friendships with those who have faced similar hardships.

Mount Olivet Rolling Acres (Victoria, MN)
In an effort to thank wounded service men and women returning from Iraq and Afghanistan for their service to our country, Mount Olivet Rolling Acres began offering no cost vacations for wounded veterans and their families at our McGregor Cabins in 2008. Our resort property, used primarily by our consumers with disabilities, provides accessible facilities in a scenic, peaceful setting where these deserving service members can relax, recreate, recover, and reconnect with family. Gold Star families are also welcomed during these designated vacation periods when the entire property is reserved for military families.

My Warrior's Place (Ruskin, FL)
My Warriors Place is a retreat center for veterans, military service members, first responders, Gold Star, Blue Star and Silver Star families. Additionally, My Warrior’s Place offers several amazing programs for those who have put their life on the line for our safety and well being, endured the death of a Fallen Warrior and/or experienced the horrors of war. Each program offered by My Warrior’s Place plays an important role in the healing and coping process, and the support that is obtained through these programs is priceless!

Operation: Care and Comfort Tickets for Troops (San Francisco Bay area and Northern California)
Working with sports teams, event venues and season ticket holders, OCC has distributed tens of thousands donated tickets to military families and veterans in the San Francisco Bay area and Northern California, free of charge.

Since 2004, Operation: Care and Comfort has worked with professional and college sports teams, entertainment venues, and promoters to send thousands of troops, reservists, veterans and their immediate families to events—free! OCC also partners with northern California sports teams to hold military appreciation/Support Our Troops games. We charge no services charges, no mailing costs—the tickets are absolutely FREE!

If you are military active duty, reservist, veteran, military retiree or a Gold Star Family located in California, you may sign up to be included on our list for complimentary tickets to local sporting and entertainment events. Donated tickets are often last minute or on game day, so please give us the best phone numbers to reach you! We currently announce new tickets on our Facebook page- OCC.USA. Check daily then follow the instructions posted to request tickets.

Operation One Voice
Warrior Weekend - Provides a weekend retreat at a southeastern resort hosting 35 to 45 fallen and wounded Special Operations Forces families. The board of directors and several project leaders host the event in which all SOF families are treated to a weekend of relaxation and the SOF wives receive a spa package.

Operation R&R
Operation R & R is a non -profit organization, founded in 2008, dedicated to serving Military families, First Responder families and Gold Star families who have sacrificed extended time apart from loved ones, been injured or worse in their line of duty. Over 1500 families have been helped since 2008.

Specifically, Operation R&R provides a week long, NO COST, stress free experience on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina for:
  • Military families completing multiple, long term deployments to help them reconnect with their spouse and children.
  • First Responders from the 9/11 bombings in NY who continue to suffer health and other issues as a result of their heroic actions at Ground Zero.
  • American Gold Star Mothers and family members to offer time to reflect and heal as a result of their child or spouse suffering the ultimate sacrifice on our behalf.

We assume total costs for airfare, lodging and housekeeping services, plus grocery and restaurant gift certificates.

Operation 300
Operation 300 is a not for profit organization that hosts adventure camps for children who have lost their fathers as a result of military service.

The camps provide an opportunity to participate in activities that embody the spirit of adventure that characterized the lives of their absent fathers while fostering a culture of courage, strength, freedom, endurance, honor and godly morality embodied by fearless patriots throughout the history of our American Republic.

Operation Welcome Home at Miracle Lodge Retreat and Conference Center
(Stewartville, MN)
The Miracle Lodge has become the premier facility for retreats for soldiers and their families. Operation Welcome Home got started in 2007 and has now served over 300 families. We have a list of upcoming military retreats this year. These retreats are free of charge for all military. Help spread the word and sign up today.

Project New Hope Inc. (Worcester, Massachusetts)
Project New Hope Inc. mission is to assist veterans and their families with PTSD, TBI, Military Sexual Trauma, Marital Issues, Chronic Pain Issues and Suicidal thoughts, and other issues that might arise. We are an organization that helps U.S. veterans and their families with addressing the challenges, fears and stigma that they face during and after they have served in our Armed Services. Project New Hope is committed to aiding our service members and their families by providing them the opportunity to get away and reconnect by attending one of our retreats. The organization offers tools for recognizing the symptoms and triggers of military-related occupational stress and injuries, as well as assist in developing coping mechanisms through holistic approaches to healing. All our staff and volunteers are committed to assisting our service members in their pursuit of New Hope and success in all they do.

Project New Hope Inc. now offers a free weekend Gold Star & Survivor Retreat.

Purple Heart Ranch (Military Warriors Hero Support Foundation)
(Sterling City, TX)
Purple Heart Ranch is open exclusively to combat wounded heroes and to Gold Star families. The ranch is also open to children of combat wounded heroes and those who have a parent currently deployed to a combat zone. Both the families of the wounded heroes and the parents of the children are encouraged to come and enjoy the experience with the hunters. There is fishing available at both properties and many other activities for the families. Both ranches are rich in history and are littered with Native American artifacts, especially arrow heads.

Send a Kid to Camp (Island Lake and Miracle Ranch, Washington)
Started in 2011 as a summer camp for children of military families, Operation Xtreme camps have grown to include multiple weeks and weekends that give military kids the opportunity to experience fun-filled camps. Since then, we've welcomed over 1,500 children from military families, and our goal is to continually serve more families with special camps and events. Gold Star families may register at no cost.

Seven Stars Foundation
The mission of Seven Stars Foundation, Inc. is to make a positive impact on the children of military members which include the fallen, wounded, active, deployed, and reservists. We accomplish this mission by sponsoring the children to YMCA camps across the country for a week where they can establish lasting bonds with new friends. We also provide relief to military members through financial, emotional, and educational assistance.

S.K.I.F.F. (Texas - Fort Hood, Killeen, Copperas Cove, Harker Heights, Belton, Salado, and Temple)
S.K.I.F.F. stands for Soldiers' Kids Involved in Fishing Fun. S.K.I.F.F. fishing trips for kids are absolutely free of charge to the children of soldiers deployed in harm's way, and to the children of soldiers who died while on active duty.

S.K.I.F.F. trips are paid for by donations from the membership of the Austin Fly Fishers and by funds they raise for this worthy cause. Austin Fly Fishers is a fly fishing club based in Austin, Texas. Your children do not have to be referred or recommended by another individual to participate. All it takes is a phone call from a parent to get the ball rolling.

Snowball Express
Snowball Express is the charity for the children of our fallen military heroes. We started in 2006 with a simple idea: Provide hope and new memories to the children of our fallen military heroes who died while on active duty since September 11, 2001. Memorials at a cemetery or listening to a long speech are not the kind of memories a child wishes to endure again . Yet that is how we honor our heroes...it is what adults do.

By attending Snowball Express a child can see that "service above self" is honored by others and is a value they should subscribe to as they continue to mature as adults. They also realize they can honor their fallen hero in ways other than by being sad or at a somber place. Snowball Express gives them a piece of their childhood back, allowing them to have fun and that it's OK to laugh.

Snowball Express is now an official program of the Gary Sinise Foundation!

Special Ops Survivors
Each year, Special Ops Survivors sponsors at least one weekend-long survivors’ conference. The annual Survivors’ Conferences are designed to foster peer-based connections and support while providing educational life-skills workshops that assist survivors as they move forward in the grieving process. These are our flag ship events and provides much needed community and fellowship that fosters healing through connection with their peers.

Special Ops Survivors also provides ongoing webinar resources and support to survivors throughout the year via Forget-Me-Not care packages on important dates like Memorial Day, birthdays, and the anniversary of their fallen hero’s birthday. Sometimes its a Starbucks gift card on Valentine’s Day and other times its a box of cookies at Christmas. It doesn’t cost much to make an impact in a woman’s heart. While we can’t bring their hero back, a grateful nation can remind them we haven’t forgotten!

Sportsmen's Foundation for Military Families
The Sportsmen’s Foundation for Military Families (SFMF), a charitable organization, is established to provide combat veterans a chance to participate in the hunting sports. Any combat veteran of the United States Armed Forces, or an immediate family member of a veteran killed in combat, is eligible to apply. Our hunts have proven to be extremely therapeutic to those in need. However, participation is not limited to those who have been wounded in battle or are suffering, any combat veteran may apply. All hunts are professionally guided. It is our way of saying thank you for your service.

Spring Reins of Life (Clinton, NJ)
Spring Reins of Life's military programs are divided into two sections – Operation Horse and Coming HOME. All services within SROL are funded and free of charge to military service members and their families.

http://www.springreinsoflife.org/srol-programs/childrens-bereavement-program/ - We also offer services on children’s bereavement for those who have lost a parent due to the war.

TAPS Programs (Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors)
TAPS provides a variety of programs to survivors nation and worldwide. Our National Military Survivor Seminar and Good Grief Camp has been held annually in Washington, D.C., over Memorial Day weekend since 1994. TAPS also conducts regional survivor seminars for adults and youth programs at locations across the country, as well as retreats and expeditions around the world. Stars4TAPS and teams4taps connect surviving military families with professional sports programs and the entertainment industry to bring hope and healing while honoring their fallen heroes.

The Little Warriors - A Brian Bill Project
(for children of Naval Special Warfare)
The Little Warriors A Brian Bill Project is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing outdoor adventure to the children of Naval Special Warfare (current, former, retired, KIA families).

The Little Warriors A Brian Bill Project is working with Outward Bound to bring the best possible adventure to you.

Canyoneering is the sport of exploring and navigating rugged, often steep-walled, and narrow canyons. Nowhere is this sport more challenging than in Utah, whose spectacular terrain features huge mesas, towering mountains, ancient rock paintings and cliff dwellings of Native Americans. Open deserts have been carved by rivers into deep canyons, ravines, and precipitous drops, that require you to rappel down sections of these slot canyons. Outward Bound’s canyoneering trips take you far beyond hiking camps and hiking adventures, into some of the most fragile environments and inspiring landscapes.

Experience Moab on this extraordinary expedition, combining a beautiful and challenging environment, with activities that place an emphasis on individual growth and community.

Travis Manion Foundation
Expeditions are service-based trips that are developed and organized by the Travis Manion Foundation for families of the fallen and veterans to come together and serve others in honor of their fallen heroes. The nation’s fallen heroes made the ultimate sacrifice while selflessly serving our nation; these group trips provide opportunities for veterans and survivors to continue that legacy of selfless service. Expeditions help participants continue to heal and develop of a community of support as they serve beside other veterans and survivors. The trips are fully funded by the Travis Manion Foundation, and are organized in locations across the country and around the world throughout the year.

Veteran Tickets Foundation
Vet Tix provides tickets to events which reduce stress, strengthen family bonds, build life-long memories and encourage service members and veterans to stay engaged with local communities and American life. We support our troops by honoring their service and providing positive family and life experiences, during and after their years of service to our country.

Vet Tix provides tickets to all branches of currently-serving Military and Veterans, including immediate family of troops KIA. Vet Tix secures tickets to sporting events, concerts, performing arts, educational and family activities across the nation.

West Virginia National Guard Gold Star Family Weekend (Camp Dawson, WV)
https://www.jointservicessupport.org/Events/EventDetails.aspx?Id=f7f787fd-31a2-b739-3946-11e80cf0c76f (awaiting 2019 info)

Wounded Warrior Family Support
Our mission is to provide support to the families of those who have been wounded, injured or killed during combat operations. The families of our casualties suffer in many ways: some financially, some psychologically.

Wounded Warriors Family Support owns five fully furnished condominium units for use by the families of our wounded or injured veterans and widows and families of our fallen heroes. Preference goes to those with children and the greatest financial need.

Four of our units are in the beautiful Bahama Bay Resort, minutes from Universal Orlando, Wet 'n Wild Orlando, and Sea World in Orlando, Florida. Passes are provided to families free of charge. Other opportunities include: The Victorian Resort, Take Flight Farms, Shenandoah, Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon.

Support for programs for surviving spouses and children

Support for programs for surviving spouses and children - Sugar Bear Foundation
The Sugar Bear Foundation seeks to honor and remember the legacy of Mario "Sugar Bear" Carazo by supporting surviving spouses and children. The Sugar Bear Foundation is a non-profit that raises funds for existing programs that support surviving spouses and their children.

Wishes granted

Wishes granted
LINK - A listing of organizations that desire to help make dreams come true for the military community.

Brat Pack 11
Brat Pack 11 is an organization founded by Kenzie Hall to show honor and gratitude to our nation’s youngest boots on the ground. Brat Pack 11 is dedicated to supporting the children of our wounded and fallen heroes by providing them with unforgettable experiences and connecting them with a network for continued support throughout their childhood.

Hope for the Warriors
A Warrior’s Wish® supports the long-term goal of hope beyond recovery through financial grants awarded to severely injured service members, veterans, their families and families of the fallen. Whether it is adaptive equipment, tools for a hobby or business, or family bonding experiences, A Warrior’s Wish collaborates with the community to make Wishes come true for our warriors and their families.

For more than a decade, Hope For The Warriors has been dedicated to restoring a sense of self, family and hope for veterans, service members and military families through a variety of programs including its first one, A Warrior’s Wish. A Warrior’s Wish honors the goals and desires of severely wounded service members, veterans, and their families. Wishes fulfill a desire for a better quality of life or support a quest for life-gratifying endeavors for post-9/11 service members, their families, and families of the fallen who have sustained physical and psychological wounds in the line of duty.
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Copyright 2008 - 2020 Benita Koeman, Operation We Are Here.  All rights reserved.
Operation We Are Here is a HUB of RESOURCES for the military community and military supporters.
Military support is not a concept to embrace; military support is sacrificial action. Visit our military support TOOLKIT.
Retreats & recreation for Gold Star families #military
Resources for supporters of military and veteran families
  • Practical insights in caring for
             Home front families
             Military personnel
             PTSD, wounded warriors
             Loved ones of the fallen

Military and veteran family resources
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  Of grace and gratitude
             peer support, sexual assault,
             suicide prevention
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  Military children, teens
  • Downloads and printables
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