Military Spouses Club Combines Social Activities With Community Outreach
Patriot Health Alliance & 4Patriots makes regular monetary and product donations to a variety of charitable organizations. One recent product donation went to the Spouses' Club of Lewis-McChord (SCLM). It's a volunteer-run, all-branches, all-ranks, spouses' group at Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Tacoma, Washington.
Serving in the U.S. military is a challenging proposition. Regardless of which service you are in. Or whether you're stationed in America or abroad.
The support a spouse can bring to a service member is immeasurable. And when those spouses gather to dedicate time and talents to helping military base residents and the surrounding community, the benefits grow exponentially.
That's the concept behind military spouses' clubs. Members meet regularly for a broad range of activities. Among them are organizing fundraising functions for worthy causes. Including grants and scholarships.
These groups are hosted on base with the permission of military officers. But they're governed by rules they establish.
Dedicated to Giving Back
SCLM is dedicated to giving back to service members, their families, and the community through service and outreach. As a result, they strengthen organizations supporting service members, families and neighbors.
They host regular activities and events for members and supporters. And provide welfare grants and contribute to scholarships to those within the local community.
Membership is open to all local military spouses who are Active Duty, National Guard, Reserve or retired.
Membership is also extended to Gold Star spouses and spouses of visiting Allied Forces. Current SCLM membership is approximately 240.
A Philanthropic Endeavor
"The main purpose of the club is the philanthropy part," said Procurement Chair Karin Maggipinto. "But there's a lot more to it. Including volunteering and helping younger spouses navigate challenges.
"It's also a social outlet. Most of us are stay-at-home spouses who have stability through our spouses' employment. So we have an opportunity to give back to the community."
"It's a nice balance between social and helping nonprofits," said Event Chair Tracey Titus.
"Getting more involved in the community has been a nice shift that has ended up helping a lot of people and organizations."
Having a Heart to Help
"An example of a grant would be if a local high school band applied for help to travel to a parade," Karin said. "Or there will be a Wear Blue to Remember Run to honor those who've been wounded in action.
"It's difficult to raise money, so we like to help. We know at some point our families are going to use these services.
"It's just part of being a military person. It's in us to give back. A lot of us are very blessed. We know many people who lost their business or insurance during COVID."
"Partnering with these people and groups allows some of them to get services they wouldn't ordinarily be able to get," Tracey added. "Whether it's Pets for Vets or any affiliation with the military."
Annual Charity Event Raises $17K
In March 2022, SCLM hosted its annual charity event. "Night in Wonderland" was held at McGavick Center at Clover Park Technical College in Lakewood, Washington.
A number of attendees dressed up for the event. Including some as Alice, White Rabbit, Mad Hatter, Queen of Hearts, and Tweedledee and Tweddledum. The evening featured a dinner, live auction, silent auction, raffle, dessert dash and other activities.
"This event is a great way to make connections in the community and to get people to donate for the auctions," Karin said. "Lots of spouses here have started businesses, so we get their information out there too.
"This year we had 350 attendees. Which was great after having been shut down for two years (due to COVID). We raised $17,000 in grants and scholarships."
Patriot Health Alliance Donates to Auction
Wishing to become involved with this worthy organization, the Patriot Health Alliance donated a number of auction items. Such as Patriot Power Greens, and Reds, Patriot Gold, Patriot Power Blender and a Heroes' Heritage American Flag.
"All of your products were well received, but the flag was the showstopper," Karin said.
"The flag was amazing," Tracey added. "Everyone kept asking about it, including where they could get one."
Karin said she reached out to 4Patriots for a donation because her family is a 4Patriots customer. "I was in Texas at Fort Hood during the (2021) ice storm," she said.
"We were displaced from our house due to no electricity in 11-degree weather. We kept the kids' electronics charged with your (Patriot Power Cell) chargers and after that I bought six 30-day survival food packages."
Most Requested Duty Station in U.S.
Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) is the U.S. military installation home to I Corps and the 62nd Airlift Wing.
Karin says JBLM is the most requested duty station in America. "It's also the No. 1 spot for families with kids with autism because it has so many services. In fact, one of four families here have children with autism."
The Western Air Defense Sector (WADS) has its headquarters at JBLM. It's made up of personnel from the Washington Air National Guard, U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, Title 5 Civilians and the Royal Canadian Air Force.
It is responsible for peacetime air sovereignty, strategic air defense and airborne counterdrug operations in the continental United States.
Behind many great military members is a great spouse. Members of SCLM have proven that again and again.
Leave a comment