Building a “Wonderland” for military families

By Tim Rondeau

The holidays are typically a time of joy and celebration with family and friends.  However, they can also present challenges financially and otherwise.  Recently, a few of our employees helped the Rhode Island National Guard create a space to celebrate the season while assisting military families in need.

The 6th annual “Holiday for Heroes” event titled Candy Wonderland benefited the children of military families in Rhode Island by hosting holiday-themed arts and crafts, face painting, make-a-wish ornament, food and other activities on Saturday, December 9 at the Warwick Armory.  Children enjoyed the festivities while parents could sneak away and choose a donated gift for their kids.

“We have families having to decide between buying a razor to shave for drill or diapers and buying dinner,” said Rhode Island State Military Volunteer Veronica Moran.  “Holiday for Heroes is one of our events that helps families in these situations.”

The week before the event, which saw upwards of 550 families, our employees were busy constructing the “wonderland.” They helped build several stations where the activities would take place, strung lights, and put up trees.

“Helping military families during the holiday season is not only rewarding, but necessary in my book,” said employee George Maerkle.  “We are happy to help this year, and all the years to come.”

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