In April 2021 the Arizona MOAA Chapter received a grant of $2500 from the MOAA Foundation that was designed for chapter member volunteer participation in a project collaborating with four non-profit organizations. The overall goal was to:

“Benefit Arizona service members globally and Arizona veterans locally by packing and delivering items to support local veterans and deployed troops”.

The Board of Directors of the Arizona Chapter of MOAA voted to add $2500 to the initial grant from its General Fund to bring the total to $5000. From these funds all materials were purchased for our event Freedom Isn’t Free held on July 27th, 2021 at the Sagewood Retirement Community in Scottsdale, AZ.

Participating non-profit organizations included:

Youth for Troops
U.S. Vets – Phoenix
Veterans First LTD
Project Veterans Pride – James Walton Home *
* Unfortunately Project Veterans Pride is terminating its services and was unable to participate.

Thirty chapter members of the Arizona Chapter of MOAA participated in addition to volunteers from the three collaborating non-profit organizations.
All materials, food, cleaning supplies, etc. were packaged and distributed by chapter members to the end user organizations.

Our special thanks to Youth for Troops for helping make this event possible and successful. Youth for Troops volunteers purchased all materials and made all preparations prior to the actual event and did an outstanding job.

Additional thanks to Carl Ulbrich, Jireh Communications, Inc. for his photo and video work of this event.

This was truly a collaborative event:
Joan Cisco, President of Veterans First LTD said, “You provided supplies and filled 48 backpacks for grades K-3 – truly making a difference in their lives.”

  • 10 backpacks were given to Domestic Violence Program that house women and children, veteran women are part of this program
  • 8 backpacks given to veteran families with disabled children through the TCH Day Program
  • 3 backpacks given to a Group Home for disabled children of Veterans.
  • 7 backpacks given to Disabled Veterans Children
  • 20 backpacks were given to the Washington School District Teachers and Social Workers providing names of known low income veteran families.

Tonya Piatt, President of Youth for Troops added our MOAA event in their August newsletter and MOAA to their website – Youth for Troops August newsletter  Community Relationships | Youth for Troops Nonprofit 501(c)(3)

Morgan Knight, Team Lead for Supportive Services for Veteran Families at U.S. Vets Phoenix said, “The move-in kits donated will go to homeless Veterans who are moving into their new apartments. These 28 baskets have such a positive impact on a Veteran who is worried about so many different things as they start a new chapter. We are so grateful that MOAA has chosen our organization to donate to. Our staff and Veterans are very appreciative of your generosity, and we look forward to what the future has to bring.”

Final impact and summary of this project’s success:
125 Care Packages (62 Food/63 Hygiene) – Youth for Troops mailed to deployed troops overseas.
28 Move-In baskets – U.S. Vets Phoenix given to veteran families.
48 Backpacks for Children of Veterans in Crisis – Veterans First, LTD