To honour our soldiers you can write a letter to a veteran thanking them for their service and celebrating their accomplishments or you can write to a member of the Canadian Forces that is currently posted in Canada or overseas. You can take part in the ‘Valentines for Vets’ or ‘Christmas Cards for Troops’ projects which help veterans and current troops feel remembered and supported. To engage in any of these activities go to the support page on the Department of National Defence website or to Veterans Affairs Canada. You can also make an ‘Izzy doll’ and send it to those currently in service oversees. The dolls are given by Canadian troops to children who live in war torn or impoverished areas around the world. Visit Mark Isfeld’s memorial page to learn more about the ‘Izzy doll’ program.
Spend time with a veteran or someone from an older war time era, visit the Go Volunteer website to find a senior centre to volunteer at or visit Veterans Affairs Canada for news and information on different events that you can attend to spend time with veterans.
With the permission of family you can adopt a Veteran’s grave and clean, weed and plant flowers at the grave to show your respect or you can plant a tree, tulip or a memorial garden in memory of the veterans in your community who have passed away.
If you are a relative of a veteran you can share your story at The Legion’s Legacies. Register at www.legionlegacies.org and post a video about your families experience with war. Take that a step further by volunteering at a local elementary school to read wartime stories to young children to keep the legacies alive.
As you can see, there are lots of different ways to keep the memory of fallen soldiers alive, most of them don’t take a lot of your time and can make a world of difference to a veteran or soldier.
By Laura Thornborough