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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Community Service Clubs, Military & Veterans Organizations, Philanthropy, Veterans, Voluntarism Promotion

Mission: Blue star families is committed to connecting one another through the unique challenges of military service and asking the larger civilian population to help as well, strengthening military families regardless of rank, branch of service or physical location, and leading military family members towards opportunities to build strength in individuals, families and communities. We accomplish this through local chapter-based community events and by serving as a bridge between families and support and service organizations that are striving to help make military life more sustainable. Through outreach and involvement with national and local organizations, civilian communities and government entities, blue star families works hand in hand to share the pride of service, promote healthier families, aid in our military readiness and contribute to our country's strength.

Target demographics: military families

Programs: Morale programs - bsf designs and delivers innovative programs that are geared for the military community. Blue star museums is a partnership between bsf, the national endowment for the arts, and 2,178 museums nationwide. The program runs from memorial day through labor day. Over 780,000 military family members visited a participating "blue star museum" in 2014. Books on bases is a program that facilitates the collection and distribution of new books to military children across the country as well as military impacted schools and libraries. With the support of generous partners, bsf has distributed over 185,000 books through this program since inception. Wounded warriors: blue star families hosts year-end holiday parties for all wounded warriors and their families as well as e-6 and below active duty service members and their families at locations in the washington dc area. The parties consist of afternoons with activities for the families and kids including face painting, building ginger bread houses, arts and crafts, singing, story time, while also providing food, beverages, and holiday gifts to all who joined us. Since the blue star theatres program debuted in september 2012, more than 105 theatres across the country are offering discounted tickets and special programming and workshops for military families, veterans, and active duty personnel. The blue star families fellowship is a partnership with corporations that provides military spouses with a paid position, serving both the sponsor corporation and bsf. Through this partnership, the fellows will acquire valuable leadership and volunteer management skills to assist in their role as a bsf chapter director as well as gain professional development opportunities via the sponsor corporation. The program is being developed to help address the widening unemployment gap amongst military spouses as identified by our blue star families' military lifestyle survey. As of december 31, 2014 bsf had placed 16 fellows in paid employment positions within bsf.

membership and chapters - bsf mission is to support, connect and empower military families to each other and in the communities where they live. Bsf does this through a chapter network that included 42 chapters. These chapters, led by volunteer chapter directors, reach out to local and state officials and military and community leaders to spread the word about military families and military issues.

research and policy - bsf, as part of its central mission to connect, engage and empower military families, conducts in-depth research on the issues that affect the military family community, using the information to inform military and civilian leaders at the national, state and local levels about the findings and to work collaboratively to find innovative and effective solutions. The annual military lifestyle survey is the principal vehicle through which these issues are identified. Active service members, spouses, veterans, and family members of active, reserve, and national guard participate in the survey. This country cares makes our military families and veterans aware that there is help and hope through a series of suicide prevention announcements featuring country music celebrities. The message is simple: "your family needs you, we need you. Thank you for your service. " the updated version of the reintegration toolkit titled "everyone serves" is expected to reach over 300,000 service member families as a downloadable e-book.

Community Stories

6 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My husband is retired military, his son is in the military and his daughter is married to a military man. They have all experienced long tours away from each other and their extended families.
When I moved to the Fort Leonard Wood area in MIssouri I knew that I wanted to be involved somehow with helping military men, women and families. When I came across the blue star family website I was impressed with all they do and wanted to get involved as a volunteer. I contacted them and met locally with their coordinator Meghan. She is married to a military man and is very excited about all the programs blue star family offered to our military families. Impressed with her compassionate and enthusiasm I knew I wanted to get involved.
I am now Operation Appreciation Coordinator in Missouri. I recieve letter and cards from all over the US and distribute them to our wonderful military families. People from all ages taking the time to sit down, create special cards, write heartwarming letters, braiding friendship bracelets, this has all been very emotional to me and very special. The thank you letters mean so much to a serviceman or women, a spouse of military , a child , a parent , a veteran or a military family. A letter can give hope, share love and make someone feel special.
I feel so happy that I have this opportunity to use my time to thank our military families- I have great respect for them and the sacrifices they give for their country.
My experience with this NPO has been empowering, giving me the chance to do something meaningful for our military families- a chance for me to say thank you in my own way.
I am grateful.....

kerryellington

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've had the pleasure to be a part of the Blue Star Family team for over a year now. I must say that this organization has been so empowering and so helpful not just to me as a military spouse but for military families across the world. Their constant focus and strive for excellence in providing info, resources and assistance for the military community is to be highly commended.

Janet M.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I LOVE BLUE STAR FAMILIES!! They do so much to support Military Families!! They always come up with great ideas, such as their Books For Bases Program and their Museum Events each year. They find unique ways to get the private and public sectors together to support our troops and their families. They work so hard on our behalf and for that I am forever grateful!! I am so proud to be a member of this amazing organization and will continue to support them any way I can! Thanks Blue Star Families for all you do for us!!

Rebekah S.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I choose to give my time and energy to Blue Star Families because I am continually blown away by the dedication, passion and integrity of the volunteers and the paid staffers. I have never been exposed to any charitable organization more committed to improving people's lives or to doing the absolute most with every dollar they receive. There is literally no limit on what can be accomplished by authentic, hard-working people who believe whole-heartedly in their mission — that's why in a few short years Blue Star Families has become the go-to military support group. I have worked with the Books on Bases program, Operation Appreciation/Honor Cards, the PSAs and helped in other BSF endeavors, as well and have yet to have an experience that I would describe as anything less than glowing.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Blue Star Families continues to surprise me by its unwavering commitment and creativity in supporting military families. I met a member of BSF at a round-table discussion regarding changes to MyCAA about a year ago. We were at Congressman Nye's office sharing how the abrupt changes had impacted military spouses using the benefit. I was immediately impressed by the member and realized that BSF was a strong, realistic and relevant voice for military families. Since then I have volunteered with BSF's Operation Appreciation, attended events BSF supported and have requested BSF representation at military family events I plan. BSF's energy, innovation and dedication continue to win the support of military families who understand the importance of representation and advocacy for military families. BSF promotes resiliency and quality-of-life issues that positively influence the military community.

Bianca M.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have personally seen the stellar support that BSF provides to military families and the impact it makes on the morale of the service members and their loved ones. The Books on Bases Program, which is tailored to encourage education and reading amongst military children, went out of their way to bring the program far from a base to my unit stationed on independent duty. It was reinforced to our unit kids that they are an important part of the military family and that their service too is vital. To know that BSF sees no boundaries, really speaks to the true character of their organization and reveals their true passion in supporting families no matter how far away they are. In addition, the Operation Appreciation program has allowed civilians to serve their troops with a simple thank you that speaks volumes. By allowing people to take pen to paper and share their feelings about what the service of the military means to them, it helps bridge the gap between our civilian and military communities. This organization works 24/7 to be a solid foundation for innovative programming for our community.