Hats Off to Veterans program asks you to Honor a Hospitalized Veteran


Civilians coping with the demands of everyday life often forget the sacrifice of our soldiers. As we pay the rent and go shopping and raise our children, we take for granted our relative security and prosperity compared to the rest of the world. Soldiers, however, know all too well the chaos and turmoil of trouble spots because they witnessed it firsthand.

May is National Military Appreciation Month and a fitting time to recognize the sacrifices American service members and their families make for freedom. Furthermore, our Veterans deserve, and many desperately need, continuing confirmation of the value of their service as they cope with the aftermath of war. If the United States wishes to remain a society of justice and opportunity, we must continually find ways to support the people who laid their life on the line to preserve it. In addition to providing adequate healthcare, and educational benefits we must tend to psychological needs as well. Faced with budget cuts and swelling admissions, VA Medical Centers are not always able to fully address these psychological needs on an individual, veteran-by-veteran basis.

Furthermore, a chasm exists between Veterans with needs, and independent citizens who are willing to pitch in, but don’t know how. On the one hand, many Veterans would like to participate in special outreach programs but are unable to find a sponsor.

On the other, individuals and groups would like to help a Veteran, but are often limited in the forms of assistance they can provide.

To bridge this gap, Manhattanville College, created a program called Hats Off to Veterans (“Hats Off”). “Hats Off” promotes recognition to veterans especially for those home or hospital bound due to injury while serving our country. When a person enrolls in the “Hats Off” program, they agree to mail or deliver a respectful greeting and note of encouragement to a hospitalized Veteran. They sign up at to receive a “Hats Off” starter kit containing Veteran contact information, guidelines for letter writing and optional care package preparation, a My Soldier bracelet (to wear in support of Veterans and American service men and women) and a specially designed My Soldier baseball hat to include with the greeting they send to their Veteran.

The program and kits are free to all who register, but donations are appreciated. Participation is not limited to Manhattanville College, but is open to the public.  In fact, it is the goal of the program to have participants from all 50 states.

We hope every American registers to use “Hats Off” to honor, support and thank a Veteran. It’s an easy way for anyone to do his or her part to recognize and cheer a hospitalized Veteran.


About National Military Appreciation Month (NMAM) Legislation in the U.S.

Senate designated May as National Military Appreciation Month in 1999 to let our service members know that their country has set aside an entire month to honor, remember and appreciate them.

More comprehensive legislation – H. Con. Res. 328 – was passed by unanimous consent of both Houses of Congress in April 2004.

National Military Appreciation Month includes: Loyalty Day, May 1

VE Day, May 8

Military Spouse Day, May 11

Armed Forces Day, May 19

Memorial Day, May 28

The Waynedale News Staff
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