My father served nearly 23 years in the U.S. Air Force so as you might imagine, I have a deep appreciation for the personal sacrifices made by the men and women in our armed forces. Long deployments away from family and friends in difficult and often dangerous conditions make them all heroes in my book.
So I was especially proud to learn that this July, UPS is helping send a little bit of home to the thousands of troops stationed abroad through a partnership with Goodyear and some of our other fellow NASCAR partners and sponsors. It’s being done in collaboration with Support Our Troops®, or SOT, a non-partisan, non-political charity established specifically to help bolster the morale and well-being of active duty troops and their families.
Prior to this weekend’s Coke Zero 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway, UPS employees will join other volunteers at the track to assemble care packages containing lip balm, sun screen, candy, DVDs and CDs, phone cards, ear phones and other donated “comfort” items. When the 5,000 care packages are ready, UPS will transport them to our hub in Atlanta, where they will be consolidated and processed further for a flight to Bagram Airbase in Afghanistan.
At UPS, we know firsthand how much these kinds of programs mean to our troops. On any given day, we have about 3,100 employees who are on military leave and there are nearly 25,000 additional UPSers working today who have served in the military at some point in their lives.
Veterans have a lot to offer any company, large or small. At UPS, we’ve found the skills and work ethic people cultivate in the military transfer very well to our business, so we utilize several different methods to recruit and mentor veterans. On our recruiting site, upsjobs.com, there is a special tab for military veterans. We also conduct veteran outreach on various job boards and UPS jobs are tagged to appear on the U.S. Department of Labor’s Veterans Job Bank widget. Our local human resources recruiters work closely with state and local Departments of Labor and Veterans Affairs as well as maintain contacts with local military bases to help identify candidates for positions throughout our company.
UPS also is a member company of American Corporate Partners (ACP), an organization designed to assist veterans with transitioning from the military to civilian jobs through mentoring, career counseling and networking. More than 50 UPS mid and senior-level managers (who themselves are veterans), provide a wide range of support services to former soldiers who are re-entering the civilian workforce.
And just last week, The UPS Store franchise network announced it has extended approximately $300,000 in special financial incentives to help U.S. veterans open their own The UPS Store location as part of “Operation Enduring Opportunity,” a national initiative to recruit and/or hire as many as 75,000 military veterans and their family members by the end of 2014.
The blessings of liberty and freedom come at a great cost, paid for by people most of us will never know. On the occasion of the 235th anniversary of our nation’s declaration of independence, let’s remember there are many things we can do to say thanks to those who protect our freedom. As the saying goes, “all give some; some give all.”
Watch the video below to learn more about Support Our Troops.
|Category:||Caring for Communities|
|Tags:||Afghanistan, care packages, employees, military, NASCAR, The UPS Store franchise, UPSers, veterans|