Recent news from The MOAA Newsletter. View previous editions of Council and Chapter News here.
MOAA will be moving to our temporary offices in Old Town, Alexandria from May 2-7. The move will occupy most of our efforts so there may be a delay in responses to emails and phone calls. We ask that you please be patient during this period.
MOAA’s Best Communicators
Congratulations to the winners of the 2017 Col. Marvin J. Harris Communications Award contest!
In the 2017 Col. Marvin J. Harris Communications Award contest, MOAA affiliates competed in two categories of competition: print and e-newsletters and websites. Councils and chapters received extra credit for communication efforts that went above and beyond established standards, with additional points being awarded in the print and e-newsletter category to affiliates that published their own membership directory, legislative advocacy materials, or recruiting materials. In the websites category, affiliates that communicated with their members via email networks and social media channels received extra credit.
All told, 85 councils and chapters received five-star awards for their exemplary communication efforts, and 19 councils and chapters received four-star awards for their outstanding efforts.
View the list of winners at www.moaa.org/communicationawards. Congratulations to MOAA’s top communicators!
Surviving Spouse Corner: The Benefits of Volunteering
Giving your time to help others not only positively affects the recipient and your community but also you.
By Patricia Farnsworth, Surviving Spouse Advisory Committee member
Volunteering can have positive benefits for the volunteer as well as for the person or organization that is served. There are many ways you can realize these positive results. It begins with having a little free time and then finding a volunteer site that deals with causes or issues about which you care. If your own knowledge or skills can benefit an organization or activity in which you have an interest, volunteering might be a perfect way to use your spare time.
The benefits of volunteering can be enormous for the volunteer and their family and community. Research has determined using your time in the right situation can reduce stress, help you make new friends, and provide opportunities to learn new skills. Research also indicates a strong correlation between volunteering and health. Those who volunteer have lower mortality rates, greater functional ability, and lower rates of depression as they grow older than those who do not volunteer.
Being a volunteer can help you feel more connected to a community — providing opportunities to meet new people and make new friends and make your community a better place. Even helping with the smallest tasks can make a real difference in the lives of people, animals, and organizations in need. Using your free time to help in a hospital benefits you as the volunteer, the patients and their families, and the hospital staff.
Additionally, volunteering helps you stay physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy and maintain self-esteem. It can lead to graceful aging and add fun to your years.
Research also indicates “volunteers who devote a considerable amount of time to volunteer activities (about 100 hours per year) are most likely to exhibit positive health outcomes.” One key for deriving health benefits from volunteering is to do it for the right reasons.
A 2012 study in the journal Health Psychology found that participants who volunteered with some regularity lived longer but only if their intentions were truly altruistic. They had to be volunteering to help others — not to make themselves feel better.
Volunteering with friends or family can be a great way to get to know people better and can help keep you excited about donating your time. Plus, it’s a wonderful way to demonstrate to your children how satisfying it can be to do something for others.
Council Presidents’ Seminar Presentations
Presentations from the April Council Presidents’ Seminar are available for download at www.moaa.org/councilseminar. Share them with your fellow council and chapter leaders!
Apply to the Surviving Spouse Advisory Committee
The deadline to submit applications for the Surviving Spouse Advisory Committee is May 31.
MOAA’s Surviving Spouse Advisory Committee (SSAC) is accepting nominations for four new members — two traditional members and two virtual members. The SSAC reports to national MOAA’s president on issues affecting the surviving spouses of military members.
The new traditional members will serve a four-year term, beginning in October 2018. To apply, complete and submit the application and required documents by May 31.
The virtual member positions are aimed at surviving spouses who might not be able to travel because of jobs, children, etcetera, but who are interested in working on surviving spouse issues. The virtual members will serve a two-year term. The deadline to submit the nomination form and required documents is May 31.
Get Content for Chapter Newsletters
Need some content to supplement your chapter’s newsletter? The White Label Template includes information, articles, and helpful tips from national MOAA that already are formatted for inclusion in your newsletter. The content is updated every month to ensure you are receiving timely, relevant information.
From the Field
MOAA chapters give back to their communities through fundraising efforts, community-service projects, scholarship programs, and other initiatives. Here are some recent activities.
The Mozark (Mo.) Chapter presented a MOAA ROTC medal to College of the Ozarks Cadet Daniel Andrews. The presentation took place April 4 during an awards assembly held at the Royal Oak Forum, College of the Ozarks.
The Admiral Arleigh Burke (Colo.) Chapter presented the American Airman statue to Air Force ROTC cadets from the University of Colorado detachment during the chapter’s February meeting.
A team of Southern Nevada Chapter members played in the Nevada Veterans’ Assistance League Golf Tournament in Boulder City Saturday, Feb. 24. Tournament proceeds benefit the Nevada State Veterans Home in Boulder City, the only state-operated veterans’ home in Nevada. More than 140 golfers participated in the tournament, which raised nearly $30,000.
Members of the Fort Campbell (Tenn.) Chapter attended the inaugural Montgomery County Veterans Coalition (MCVC) fundraiser dinner March 24 at the Austin Peay State University Morgan Center. The two tables of Fort Campbell Chapter members were among more than 200 attendees that came together to raise money for the MCVC, whose mission is to “bring together the community to share information, knowledge, support, and resources and to become a unified voice in advocating for veterans and their families in our community.”
The Green Country (Okla.) Chapter assisted with the annual Union High School Regional Junior ROTC drill meet April 7. In addition to the chapter supplying and presenting trophies to winners in various categories, members helped with tabulating score sheets throughout the day.
On April 20, former USA Capt. Richard Archer, past president of the Central Texas Chapter presented a top leadership award to Junior ROTC Cadet Luis Perez from Robert M. Shoemaker High School in Killeen, Texas. This year, the chapter presented awards totaling $3,750 to seven deserving local high school students. Since the inception of its program 16 years ago, the chapter has awarded more than $27,000 in scholarships.
The East Central Alabama Chapter presented MOAA ROTC/Junior ROTC medals to 13 local cadets during the chapter’s annual awards banquet at the Saugahatchee Country Club April 17. The medal recognizes students’ leadership and academic achievements.