On Thursday, May 13, 2021, Northeast Ohio Foundation for Patriotism (NEOPAT) hosted a donor appreciation event at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, Stillwater Place to provide an update on how NEOPAT has met the challenges presented throughout 2020 while continuing to honor and provide assistance to military veterans and their families. A report to the community shared the immediate needs NEOPAT addresses and how the dollars are being allocated.
In 2020, NEOPAT supported over 2,100 military personnel and family members and distributed over $80,000 in direct emergency financial assistance, as well as provided assistance for adopt-a-family programming, veteran-based programming, scholarships, and patriotic / remembrance events. This was accomplished through a focus on four areas of community impact including: promoting patriotism; remembering our veterans; emergency and wellness support of military and their families; and transition connections including housing, employment and mental health support.
The highlight of the evening was remembering U.S. Army 1st Lt. Ashley Irene White as our Charles Kirby Wilcox Honoree for 2021. Ashley was killed in Afghanistan in 2011 but her work as a Cultural Support Team member paved the way for many changes in the roles for women in the military. Ashley’s story has been shared in a current book, “Ashley’s War: The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield”, by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon. We were honored to be able to host the White family and hear from her twin-sister, Brittany Knappenberger, who shared the importance of the recognition of Ashley and her story with the NEOPAT community.
NEOPAT is committed to Keeping the Promise to veterans and military families and we ask for your generous donations to allow us to continue to offer this support. 100% of every dollar raised serves and supports the needs of local military and their families in Northeast Ohio. We invite you to learn more at www.neopat.org and save the date for our annual Gala on March 5, 2022.