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Who We Are
ASA is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization that links individual units in all branches of the military with communities across the country
America Supports You is DOD's official troop support website
The following names are trademarked by our organization
America Supporting Americans
Suggested Adoption Activities
There are many activities communities and units can engage in. Whatever you plan, be sure you think of the following things before you begin:
1) What will the activity cost? Are there transportation costs involved?
2) How much time and how many people will it take to plan and run the activity?
3) Is there sufficient support in the community for the activity?
4) Is the unit stationed at home or deployed abroad?
5) Have unit members agreed to the activity, if it requires their attendance?
With these questions in mind, here are some activities to consider. . . .
Sending Letters & Care Packages
Unit members love receiving letters and care packages. These can be sent by school and community groups. The ASA Handbook for Adoptive Cities contains a list of items that are good to include in care packages, or you can look the Ideas for Care Packages page included on our website.
Having Unit Members Speak to School and Community Groups
Many unit members enjoy coming to talk to school and community groups, when they are statined at home and are able to do this. the Youth Civic Action and Awareness Program (YCAP) encourages teachers to integrate adoption activities into the classroom. (Visit the YCAP page for more information on this program.)
Holding Parades and Hosting Parties
Whether it's the 4th of July, Memorial Day, or Veterans' Day, both community residents and unit members can enjoy a parade! Going away parties for units being deployed and homecoming parties for units returning from abroad are also a great idea. Just remember there may be transportation costs involved for unit members to travel to the adoptive community, so fundraising may be needed. Plan ahead!
Exchanging Awards and Holding Recognition Ceremonies
It is a good idea to create opportunities to recognize unit members for their military service and for their involvement in your community's adoption program. It is also good to give them the opportunity to recognize community residents who have been particularly supportive and committed to working with the adoption program and adoption activities.
Finding Joint Community Service Projects to Work on
Unit members may be interested in participating in a joint comunity service project with area residents. This might be a Toys-for-Tots campaign, a Red Cross blood drive, a school fair or charity event, a boy or girl scout camping trip, or any orther project the community and unit members agree to. Keep in mind that these activities might well serve as fundraisers for other adoption events and activites that have costs involved. (Remember that donations, whether by check or online contribution, can always be directed through ASA so that donors are able to take a tax deduction for their donations.)
Winning Hearts and Minds. . .
A community might want to coordinate with its adopted unit and send items to be distributed by unit members to civilians or even to local policemen living and working in the area in whihc the adopted unit is deployed. Provided their adopted unit has clearly confirmed their willingness and ability to engage in such an activity, communities can send toys, school supplies, and even suplus police equipment to units deployed abroad who then distribute these items to local residents and policemen they are working with. (Police equipment cannot include any weapons, but vests, helmets, and other basic supplies are very helpful.) The ASA Handbook for Cities has more information about this type of activity; it is crucial that you follow the parameters outlined there. Please feel free to discuss this further with someone from ASA.
Showing Support for Family Members of Units Deployed Abroad
It is often difficult for families of service men and women when their loved ones are deployed abroad. Finding ways to show community support for them, particularly if a unit member is wounded or makes the ultimate sacrifice, is an excellent thing to do. Notes, cards, letters of support from the Mayor, and even meals delivered by caring neighbors during a difficult time are all things to consider.