BIG SKY, Mont. (February 5, 2016) – Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) recently gave wounded veterans the opportunity to enjoy an evening of food, music, silent auctions, and raffles at the Big Hearts Under the Big Sky banquet. WWP donated tickets to the 24 Alumni and family members who attended, to support the Montana Outfitters and Guides Association (MOGA).
“The event was a benefit dinner for Montana Outfitters and Guides Association to continue giving back to those who are deserving,” said Marine Corps Veteran and WWP Alumnus Michael Elliot. “They’ve helped veterans for years and given them a chance to explore the outdoors. It’s a great cause.”
Big Hearts Under the Big Sky is a program that hosts events to support MOGA, which places children diagnosed with life threatening illness, women suffering from breast cancer, and military veterans who have provided extraordinary service to our country, on fully guided and outfitted trips at no charge. The event featured raffles for backpacking trips, special guest speakers, food, live music, and a silent auction.
“My wife was able to join us, and we were very glad to get out and enjoy an evening like this. Because I work full time and have a family, these opportunities are rare,” Elliot explained. “I was able to sit with other warriors and talk about the evening, about our lives, about anything really. We witnessed a great deal of gratitude around us and thankfulness for those who want to help veterans. It was so great to see the community come together to support such a great cause.”
WWP partners with other organizations that share the nonprofit’s mission to honor and empower Wounded Warriors. Through partnerships, WWP looks to bridge gaps in existing programs and provide services to those who do not live in a community near where the veteran’s service organization (VSO) has a physical presence.
“There was a lot of laughter at our table, and around us where the other warriors were sitting,” said Elliot. “I got to meet one of the guys who works at Wounded Warrior Project and he took a truly sincere interest in us enjoying our evening. It was very inviting and relaxing.”
Many wounded service members face similar challenges adjusting to their injuries and civilian life. The WWP Alumni program creates support through shared experiences and brings injured veterans together to build camaraderie. By bonding through events and programs, these veterans learn they are not alone. The WWP Alumni program is one of 20 life-saving programs and services offered free of charge to wounded service members, their caregivers, and families.
Since being founded in 2003, WWP has evolved its programs and services to meet the growing needs of the constituency it serves. Currently, more than 100,000 wounded service members, their family members, and caregivers receive support each year through free WWP programs and services. Through a high-touch and interactive approach, the WWP vision is to foster the most successful, well-adjusted generation of wounded service members in our nation’s history.