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Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Thank You Foundation

The Thank You Foundation was started with the belief that the words thank you could transcend political, religious, and ideological differences and could provide an opportunity so that every citizen could express their appreciation for those that serve and that have served our country.
The Foundation was started as a grass roots effort by U.S. Army Veteran John Guinn. John's Grandfather William V. Guinn is a World War II Veteran, seeing action in both the Battle of the Bulge and Normandy, and was awarded a Purple Heart for injuries sustained in action. John's father Vernon (David) Guinn served in the US Army during the Viet Nam era. John has two uncles that retired from the military and several cousins that also served in the US Armed Forces. However, John's primary inspiration for The Thank You Foundation came from his mom, Juanita.
Juanita Guinn worked endlessly for the Am Vets Organization and served as President of the Ladies Auxiliary, Post 24, in Dayton Ohio. Juanita believed that gratitude and appreciation for Soldiers and Veterans should always be a priority and that without exception our support and respect should be presented publicly. Juanita passed away of cancer in March of 2002. The Thank You Foundation is a fitting tribute to the work she did.
The Foundation operates on the same core values that John learned in the military and from his family Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Honor, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage, all define how The Thank You Foundation approaches its "Mission of Appreciation".
Based in Cincinnati the Foundation operates primarily in the Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana area. However its reach has been felt all across the country and most definitely in the parts of the world where the U.S. Military is present.
The Thank You Foundation is still in its infancy and may lack some of the resources and connections available to larger nonprofit organizations. However it has been able to make an impact on thousands of lives and continues to make great strides at helping to improve the quality of life our nation's heroes.
The strength in the organization is that it can often react more quickly than most government institutions and can be more flexible within its mission to help fulfill a need. Since the Foundation works so closely with unit Commanders, Family Readiness Leaders, and with Veterans Service Organizations it can often act as a conduit for helping to connect resources while providing services of its own.
  • Assists in providing direct support for Veterans, Active Duty Personnel, and their families during the Christmas Holiday Season and in times of need.
  • Was instrumental in helping to complete the Cincinnati VA's Mobile Health Clinic which provides health care services to Veterans all across the Greater Cincinnati area.
  • Has planned and participated in a number of special events honoring Veterans, Military Personnel, and their Families.
  • Regularly participates in Family Readiness activities, deployment briefings, family day events, mobilization briefs, and deployment and homecoming events.
  • Has participated in visits to Walter Reed Army Hospital in Washington D.C. Brooke Army Hospital in San Antonio Texas, the Ohio Veterans Home, The Fisher House, VA Care Facilities and nursing homes, honoring and saying "Thank You" to Veterans and wounded soldiers.
  • Has sent Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan to sporting and entertainment events including Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians, and Washington Nationals baseball games, Cincinnati Bengals and Washington Redskins football, Cedar Point and Kings Island Amusement Parks, and to dinners and movies as a way of showing appreciation and providing recipients well deserved recreational and morale building opportunities.
  • Has shipped several hundred care packages to troops serving overseas, and has helped to supply active duty units with school supplies, clothing, and toys to distribute to Iraqi children.
  • Has conducted its Thank You Card program in schools in over 40 states and has sent over 100,000 Thank You cards to Veterans and Active Duty Service Members since 2007.
  • Has presented over 1000 Certificates of Appreciation at homecomings and special ceremonies honoring Veterans and Active Duty Personnel .
  • Actively supports and works with organizations such as the Blue Star Mothers of America Inc., The Military Order of The Purple Heart, the Patriot Guard Riders and Silver Star Families of America.
  • Actively participates in and supports National Military Appreciation Month.

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