Connecting with veterans all year long
Veterans not only deserve being celebrated and honored on Veterans Day, they deserve support all year long.
One way to do this is by highlighting the threefold mission of the Douglas County Veterans Monument Foundation (DCVMF).
First, DCVMF maintains the monument, Freedom’s Keeper, a memorial in Castle Rock with the six service seals of the U.S. military as well as the flags of the services. Second, the organization provides financial aid grants to veterans who need them. Third, DCVMF is a valuable resource for veterans to connect with other veterans and to learn of veteran services.
“Many veterans need financial assistance for sure. We offer a hand up, not a handout,” said Jarrod Wildman, chairman of DCVMF. “Some of our veterans need help with VA benefits.”
Wildman continued, “The biggest thing veterans need is connection to other veterans and like-minded people. Oftentimes, they struggle with the transition from service to civilian life. Many of our events provide help with that, as well as get the word out that there is assistance for them available.”
Wildman also wanted the community to note that DCVMF is an all-volunteer organization that relies on funding from donations. One hundred percent of the money raised stays in Douglas County, for Douglas County veterans. Once a financial aid grant is approved, the money goes directly to the financial need. The veteran does not personally receive the funds.
Wildman pointed out that Douglas County has a high number – more than 20,000 – servicemen and women making this their home. The feeling of community and proximity to several military bases make Douglas County a popular place to raise a family and settle into retirement.
“Our next event is a Veterans Day celebration at the Freedom’s Keeper monument (located at the corner of Fourth and Wilcox Streets) on November 11 beginning at 11 a.m. The event is open to the public, and there will be a presentation as well as guest speakers honoring all those who have served,” concluded Wildman.
Afterward, there will be a celebration of the 10-year anniversary of the monument and the DCVMF. For additional information, visit dcvmf.org.
By Karen Leigh; photo courtesy of Douglas County Veterans Monument Foundation