Honor Flight Columbus is excited to announce a new program to benefit our veterans and schools. Our Sponsor a Vet program is designed to encourage fund raising by schools/classrooms and in exchange the schools get the opportunity to connect personally with a WWII, Korea or Vietnam veteran.
If you are not aware, Honor Flight Columbus operates solely on public donations. While there is never a charge to the veteran, the cost to Honor Flight Columbus for each veteran, and we provide almost 500 veterans a year with this honor, is approximately $500.00.
For a minimum $500.00 donation to Honor Flight Columbus, a school/class can sponsor a local veteran for their upcoming Honor Flight. After the donation is raised, the goal is to have a local veteran who is already scheduled for their Honor Flight, along with an Honor Flight Columbus volunteer, contact the school/class before the flight to accept the donation and meet and talk to the students.
River Valley Heritage Elementary is the first school in Central Ohio to participate in the Sponsor a Veteran program. Heritage has raised enough money to sponsor three veterans.
Gerald Blue (back row, second from right) will take the trip in June. He is shown here with members of the Student Welcoming Committee, Don Wilson (WWII veteran and Honor Flight Columbus representative) and Jill Shore (first-grade teacher at the school).
See this Marion Star article for more information.
The school/class will be encouraged to write individual special letters to their veteran before their trip. These letters, called “mail call” are given to the veterans during their special day. (Many veterans have said reading the letters from the kids is the best part of their special day.) The school/class can also write one letter that is from the entire school/class to be placed in the veteran end-of-trip folder along with the veteran’s certificate.
The school/class could follow their veteran’s trip during the day with social media updates from the veteran’s assigned guardian.
The school/class would be invited to participate in the special “Homecoming” we give the vets when they return from Washington, D.C. on a Saturday evening.
Read about how Teays Valley West Middle School students sponsored one veteran in 2017 with plans for more in 2018.
After the flight, the school/class will receive a special “Sponsor a Vet” Honor Flight Columbus certificate for the class, along with photo of the veteran.
After the flight, the school/class would be encouraged to invite the veteran to the classroom to have the veteran share with the students their day of honor.
Honor Flight Columbus has heard many times of schools or classrooms that want to help our group and have a more personal relationship with a veteran. As our senior veterans are living history, what better way to learn about military service and these historical conflicts then to have somebody that was there!
We believe our youth need to develop a passion for patriotism and an understanding of the service all of our Veterans have done for our country. It takes a community to raise a child. And it takes many communities, schools, and individuals to help keep this wonderful program going into the future. Will you help?
Contact us here:
Honor Flight Columbus
P.O. Box 12036, Columbus, OH 43212