SAN ANTONIO, Dec. 7, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Operation Homefront, the national non-profit dedicated to providing emergency financial and other assistance to the families of our nation's military, today kicked off the first of seventeen events taking place across the nation through December 19 to distribute holiday meals to military families.
The Holiday Meals for Military Program began Thanksgiving 2009 as a result of a chance encounter in a supermarket in Utica, N.Y., near Fort Drum. A soldier, his wife, and infant had a handful of grocery items they could not afford, so a Beam Inc. employee picked up the $12 cost for the groceries. Since that time, the program has grown from initially providing 500 meals kits to military families in 2009 to providing 5,200 this holiday season.
The 5,200 meal kits, which include all the grocery items necessary for a full holiday meal, will be distributed to lower and mid-grade ranking military families, E-1 thru E-6, at seventeen bases nationwide in December 2012, including Camp Pendleton, Calif.; Fort Benning, Ga.; Fort Campbell, Ky.; Fort Carson, Colo.; Fort Drum, N.Y.; Fort Hood, Texas; Fort Knox, Ky.; Great Lakes Naval Base, Ill.; and MacDill Air Force Base, Fla.
"Military families are not only dealing with the effects of war, but also the current economic difficulties," said Jim Knotts, President and CEO of Operation Homefront. "So often these families are split up during the holiday season from deployments. This year, we are helping them bring the celebration home, and show that we are thankful for the sacrifices that they have made for our country."
Distributing these meals is an important undertaking that will be carried out in military communities and at local Operation Homefront Field Offices across the nation. For more information on how to volunteer or donate to the cause, please log on to www.HolidayMealsForMilitary.org.
In addition to Beam Inc., sponsors for the program include Chinet, Cargill, Southern Wine & Spirits, Mrs. Smith's®, and Nestle Waters North America, Inc.
About Operation Homefront: A national nonprofit, Operation Homefront leads more than 4,500 volunteers with nationwide presence, and has met more than 590,000 needs of military families since its inception in 2002. A four-star rated charity by watchdog Charity Navigator, nationally, 94 percent of total revenue donated to Operation Homefront goes directly to assist service members. For more information, go to www.OperationHomefront.net.
SOURCE Operation Homefront