I wanted to let you know we are thinking about everyone in the Veteran community and those of you who are continuing to help us build the Museum community, programs and events. I also want to thank all our financial supporters for their generosity, allowing us to fulfill our nonprofit mission.
As you know, we temporarily closed the doors of the National Veterans Memorial and Museum on March 13 to protect the health of our guests, volunteers and staff.
In just a few short weeks, we have all experienced great change with children home from school, recreational facilities and most retail stores closed and a majority of us who are able to do so working from home.
While COVID-19 may have altered our daily lives, it can serve as a means to inspire strength and resiliency in all of us. We can and will get through this trying time. In the meantime, I encourage everyone to think about those who need a hand.
Many of our Veterans may be particularly vulnerable during this time of social distancing and restricted travel. We know Veterans do better when they are connected and engaged in their communities. I encourage you to reach out to the Veterans in your lives. Here are a few things you can do to keep them engaged.
- Make regular phone calls to check in. together. If that’s not your thing, how about sending a card or letter?
- Offer to pick up groceries and medications for elderly Veterans and those who have medical conditions that put them at higher risk.
- Take advantage of technology and reach out through Facetime, Skype or other digital avenues. Seeing a friendly face can help everyone feel less isolated.
- If you are able to connect online, there are plenty of great games you can play.
While I think daily about how to accomplish the four pillars of the National Veterans Memorial and Museum, it seems they were written for times like these.
- Honor: Americans’ contributions to our country and through military service.
- Connect: Civilians with Veterans and their experiences.
- Inspire: Visitors to serve their community and nation as active, engaged citizens.
Educate:School children about the history and value of service.
I encourage you to be an inspiration to others, stay connected with those who may need some company, show our children how to serve others and conduct yourself with honor in trying circumstances.
Stay safe and Demonstrate Inspired Leadership.
Lt. General Michael Ferriter, U.S. Army (Retired)