Before the 4th

Want to do something special for our troops right now?

Just pick one of the USO’s 4 for the 4th Projects and help us complete it in time for the 4th of July. This is a simple, direct way to provide comfort, support and a much-needed chance to relax to our troops this summer.

Are you in? Pick the project you want to make happen — Summer Sports Kits, Phone Calls Home, Supplying Day Rooms for Wounded Troops, Care Packages to the Frontlines — make your gift supporting our troops today!

Our 4 for the 4th Campaign captures the spirit and energy of the USO. We’re out there side-by-side with our troops, identifying the things they need. Then, we count on patriots like you to step up and help meet those needs.

And these four projects are the ones the troops keep asking for. We’ve gotten a good start in the first few months of the year, but we need you to help take us the rest of the way. So far we’ve:

You’ve been such a great friend to our troops. I really hope you can help with one of these four special projects. Help get this urgent campaign off to a great start.

I know you’ll do your best for our troops. You always do.

- Sloan Gibson, USO President & CEO

Renew Your Support for 2012

When we asked Toby Keith if he would be able to visit our troops again this year, he immediately signed up — for his 10th tour in 11 years.

But he’s not the only one. The Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders, who have gone on 73 tours, will likely go on 2 more tours this year; and many other celebrities are stepping up and renewing their commitment to those that are doing so much to protect the freedoms we enjoy daily.

That’s why I’m reaching out to you — our online supporters like you, who are especially passionate about supporting our troops — to ask you to renew your commitment by our February 29th early renewal deadline.

Will you join Toby and many others in renewing your support for our troops with a generous gift of $25, $50, or more by midnight February 29th?

Toby Keith renewed his support, will you do the same?This year is going to be challenging for our troops in harm’s way, for those recovering from injuries, and for the families of our military members who serve at home.

But I know, with your help, we can help them overcome these challenges. It’s what the USO has done for over 71 years. And with your renewed support, I know we can really make a difference in their lives.

Only a few days left before our February 29th deadline. Renew your support for our troops with a generous gift of $25, $50, or more today.

I’ve been in the crowd at USO tours when superstars like Toby Keith take the stage. Life changing is a good description of the spirit-lifting impact these incredible performers have on our troops…an effect that can be seen by the smiles on their faces and felt by the excitement in their voices.

Through our entertainment tours and other programs, our troops know that thousands of Americans decided to renew their support and are standing by their side.

Thank you in advance for your help as we support those that do so much for each of us. - Brigadier General John Pray, USAF (Ret.), USO Executive Vice President

Support Our Troops: Home or Away

 

A special message from USO President Sloan Gibson:

As the holiday season approaches, I hope you’ll take a moment to remember the brave men and women who are doing so much to keep our country and our families safe.  Many of our troops won’t be able to make it home for the holidays this year, so the USO is launching a special campaign to honor their service called Support Our Troops: Home or Away.

Your generous donation of $25 or more will provide a touch of home for troops serving around the world. And if you donate $25 or more to support our troops and get your limited edition “Home or Away” t-shirt in time for the holidays! It’s the perfect way to show your support at a sporting event, at the neighborhood barbecue, or while volunteering at your local USO center.

Thanks to the generosity of supporters like you, the USO stands with our troops in forward operating bases in Afghanistan, Iraq and around the world. But we’re also there for troops stationed all over the USA and our heroic wounded warriors who have returned from the front lines.

The USO makes sure that everywhere our troops are, there is a touch of home and a friendly smile to welcome them. We provide free phone calls to loved ones back home, entertainment tours with today’s best entertainers and care packages full of all the things that remind them that they are loved and appreciated.  Your gift will make sure these great initiatives continue to let our troops know we will always be there for them!

P.S. — The final deadline to make a donation to the USO’s Supporting Our Troops: Home or Away campaign and receive your jersey-style t-shirt is midnight on October 31.  Spread the word…

A Billy Ray Cyrus Concert…and Operation Phone Home!

U.S. service members pose for photos with country singer Billy Ray Cyrus during a USO holiday show at Al Asad Air Base, Iraq, Dec. 19, 2009. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Triah Pendracki/Released)

Country superstar and USO tour veteran Billy Ray Cyrus will play a free concert at 7 p.m. Sunday at Biggs Army Airfield on Fort Bliss.   This event is a special, exclusive performance just for military personnel with valid IDs and their families; the general public will not be admitted. 

Cyrus is a great supporter of the Troops, having gone a week-long, three-country USO tour last December with Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; tennis star Anna Kournikova; and comedian Dave Attell.  He’s also a supporter of Operation Phone Home, a USO program that delivers prepaid international phone cards to deployed service members free of charge, and recently shared this special message that explains how YOU can support the program, too: 

“Being separated from family and loved ones is just one of the many difficult sacrifices our troops make to defend our country and our freedom. But right now, you and I have a special opportunity to help make dealing with that separation just a little easier. 

Thanks to the USO’s Operation Phone Home program, when you donate $15 today, you will provide our brave men and women with 45 calls home.To make the most of this opportunity, the USO has set a goal of 100,000 calls by July 31. It’s an ambitious goal, but it’s one we must take on for our troops. And it’s one we know we can achieve with the help of generous supporters like you. So please, don’t hesitate and join in this great campaign today. 

Thank you,
Billy Ray Cyrus”

Thanks to Billy Ray Cyrus for all he does for our Troops and their families, and thanks to all of YOU who make our programs and services possible.  Let’s make these 100,000 calls by July 31st a reality!

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.

Our Troops Know I Have Their Back!

The 4th of July is almost here.  We at the USO are gearing up for a patriotic celebration…and we want YOU to be a part of it!

Now through Flag Day – Monday, June 14 – you can show your support of the USO by donating $20 or more to the We’ve Got Their Back campaign.  In return, we’ll send you a limited-edition USO t-shirt that lets everyone know just how much you support the Troops.

It’s always easy and secure to donate online to the USO.  And the Flag Day deadline ensures that you’ll receive your t-shirt just in time to celebrate the 4th of July in USO style.  We can’t think of a better way to celebrate our nation’s independence.

What are you waiting for?   Let ‘em know “We’ve Got Their Back” today!