Sharing the Love

The competition is heating up over at the Subaru “Share the Love” voting! The top two charities will will join ASPCA®, Make-A-Wish® and Meals On Wheels Association of America® as participants in this year’s holiday campaign.

Starting November 21, up to $5 million will be donated to five charities. The USO could be one of them. Vote daily – no need to like a page, download an app or even have a Facebook account!

Share the Love

The USO is excited to be a finalist to be a part of the Subaru’s 2012 “Share the Love” event! In August, the two charities that receive the most votes on Subaru’s Facebook site will be included in this winter’s “Share The Love” event. We encourage you, your friends and families to cast your ballots for the USO at sharethelove.subaru.com/facebook — you can vote every day until August 26th! During the “Share The Love” event at dealerships this winter, Subaru customers will be able to select which of the five charities they would like Subaru to donate $250 for every new Subaru vehicle sold or leased from November 21st through January 2nd, up to a grand total of $5 million… wow!

MAJ Butch at the USO on Bagram Air Base and wants you to vote!

Not only can you help us by voting every day, but you can also help remind our supporters to vote Every day we’ll be posting a patriotic dog (or any beloved pet) photo on our Facebook page to remind our community to vote! Submit your own pet at USO.org and maybe yours will be our featured pet helper of the day!

Wonder Bread Partners With the USO to Honor American Heroes

For a second year, Wonder® bread is partnering with us to celebrate ordinary Americans making extraordinary contributions to their families, communities and country with the 2012 Wonder Bread Heroes program. Wonder is inviting families across the country to join the celebration and nominate American heroes in their lives for a chance to have $50,000 donated to the USO in the winning hero’s name. The Wonder Bread Hero winner will also receive $2,500 and a year’s supply of Wonder to enjoy with his or her family!

“The USO and Wonder bread are two great American classics,” Tameika Miller, Wonder brand manager, says. “For more than 70 years, the USO has been making a difference in the lives of our American troops and their families. And for more than 90 years, Wonder bread has been a staple in American households and a family favorite. The Wonder Bread Heroes campaign gives us a chance to honor Americans making a difference in the lives of those around them while supporting the USO’s mission and the creative programs it offers.”

Know someone who deserves to win? Nominate them at www.wonderbreadheroes.com today!

Heroes with Drive Contest

Our good friends over at Lifetime have recently partnered with AutoTrader for the “Heroes With Drive” contest – and YOU could win!

What makes your military hero extra-special in addition to serving their country?  Upload a photo and in 500-characters or less, tell Lifetime how your hero inspirse you and what car they should drive.  Your hero could win $25,000 towards the purchase of a new car on AutoTrader.com and you could win $500 too!

Good luck to everyone who enters and don’t forget to watch Army Wives on Sundays at 10pm ET.  And check out a special “Army Wives” Home Movie where Joan talks about being in the Army and Motherhood…

Tied to a Cause: Making a Whale of a Difference

The USO and vineyard vines® have partnered to benefit Operation Enduring Care…and YOU can be a part of it!  The Connecticut-based apparel and accessories brand’s “Tied to a Cause” campaign is a charitable program that honors different charities each month by selling custom classic tote bags and ties in a variety of colors, with proceeds benefiting the featured organization, will be specifically supporting the USO’s Operation Enduring Care initiative through the July 4th weekend, 2010. Click here to check out the limited-edition ties and totes that are available for purchase!

The USO has pledged to raise $100 million over five-years for Operation Enduring Care, a comprehensive long-term initiative to support America’s Wounded Warriors and their families. vineyard vines will sell custom classic tote bags and ties in a variety of colors on their website for the month of June, with all proceeds from sales directly benefiting Operation Enduring Care.  We’ll also be holding in-store events at vineyard vines locations around the country; details are forthcoming.

“To be able to help such an honorable organization as the USO is incredible,” said CEO and co-founder Ian Murray. “Their support of our troops who fight for our freedom is truly commendable. We’re privileged to raise funds for Operation Enduring Care.”

“We are excited about the new relationship with vineyard vines,” said Sloan Gibson, president and CEO of the USO. “As we continue to support the troops and their families, we want to thank vineyard vines for their commitment to raising funds for Operation Enduring Care and Wounded Warriors.”

To celebrate, we’re giving away totes and ties to four lucky blog readers!  Just leave a comment below to tell how how you’d wear YOUR tote or tie to show support of our wounded warriors and Operation Enduring Care.  Would you take the tote to the beach?  Wear the tie to a wedding?  Be creative!

Four winner will be chosen at random; USO employees and their families are not eligible.

Calling All Front-Line Bards and Homefront Minstrels

For the bards of the front lines and the word minstrels on the home front, ON PATROL, the magazine of the USO, is seeking combat poetry that captures a service member’s experience both overseas and stateside for an upcoming article. ON PATROL also may include it in its 300,000-circulation magazine!

There are no length or form restrictions, but the work must be original, the author must hold the copyright, and authors grant the USO and ON PATROL the right to reprint in either a print or online format.

Please send submissions to EditorOnPatrol@USO.org by March 30. Include full name, rank and unit number [if applicable] and contact information. Please use the world “combat poetry” in the subject line.

We look forward to being inspired, and so offer a bit of inspiration to get the creative thoughts flowing.

SILENT PATRIOT
Author Unknown

A woman for all seasons
A woman for today.
She grows to meet the challenges
And grows along the way.
Her life is not an easy one
With many loads to bear.
But she proudly serves her husband
And the uniform he wears.

Although she didn’t take the oath
To preserve democracy
She’s there each day on the home front
To keep our country free.
She’s foreign-born or a country girl,
Diversity you will find.
But to be an army wife
It takes a special kind.
She’s one who keeps on going
Through adversity and pain.
She’s the steady, strong foundation
When nothing stays the same.

She’s the one who sheds a tear
As Old Glory passes by,
But couldn’t give a answer
If you were to ask her why.
Throughout the years, she marches on
Through tears and joy and strife.
She’s America’s unsung hero-
She’s a military wife.