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Orange County’s ‘Stand and Salute’ Giving Day focuses on military veterans

In military time, the Stand & Salute Giving Day online fundraising to benefit six nonprofits in Orange County who serve veterans and their families starts just after zero hundred hours on Thursday, June 17.

Civilians, that means a second after the stroke of midnight — or 12:00:01 a.m. Thursday.

Then, for the next 24 hours, military folk and civilians alike — anybody who wants to help veterans in Orange County — can find find match challenges and peer-to-peer outreach on social media to help fund organizations taking part in the fourth annual military-themed virtual Giving Day, all of which is being held under the auspices of Orange County Community Foundation’s philanthropic engine.

The Giving Day 2021 hopes to raise at least $125,000, up from the $90,000 benchmark that seven organizations exceeded during their collaborative fundraising day in May 2020. Last year’s Stand & Salute event brought in $153,000.

Orange County is home to more than 107,000 veterans, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent American Community Survey. Although inroads have been made since a sweeping study commissioned by Orange County Community Foundation in 2015 pointed out the struggles many veterans face in transitioning from military to civilian life, an update last year showed areas that still need improvement.

Information on how the Giving Day might help can be found on a landing page at stand-and-salute-giving-day.ocnonprofitcentral.org. Also, all of the organizations taking part in the event have their own pages with details about who you’re funding and how to give.

Money raised during Stand & Salute will benefit organizations that provide resources to veterans and their family members. Those resources take the form of housing and food assistance, mental health services, employment guidance, help in accessing GI benefits, educational opportunities and financial literacy. It will go to these organizations:

• 2-1-1 OC, which features a veterans portal and connection to a veteran peer navigator

• Strong Families, Strong Children, a program of the Child Guidance Center

• Goodwill of Orange County’s Tierney Center for Veterans Services, a veteran-operated hub for resources and referrals

• Strength In Support (SIS), which specializes in behavioral health services

• Support the Enlisted Project, or STEP, and its focus on financial self-sufficiency

• Working Wardrobes and its VetNet services to help people transition from military life to civilian employment

Each of the nonprofits involved in this year’s Stand & Salute also set individual fundraising goals, ranging from $5,000 to $100,000, and have match opportunities to boost that fundraising.

Orange County residents have remained generous on other Giving Days, even as COVID-19 took lives and livelihoods, said Carol Ferguson, director of donor relations and programs for Orange County Community Foundation. She expects that financial support to continue on Thursday.

“People really care,” Ferguson said. “They want to help.”


Source: Orange County Register

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