The Army of Hope Project, created by the Grand Lodge of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, is a way of showing our support and appreciation to our military men and women in the Armed Forces of the United States. It was important to us that we stood in the gap for those being deployed overseas; those fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan; putting themselves in harm’s way so that we can feel safe; leaving their families behind. We knew we needed to help ease the anxiety of these brave men and women as they embarked on their journey while wondering if their families would be okay until their return.
- In 2007 the Florida State Elks Association began serving our deployed Florida military families with financial assistance through the FSEA Army of Hope. In 2010 the committee, with the approval of the FSEA, we expanded assistance to those returning veterans that were not covered by other funds, including an AOH week for children of military personnel at our FSEA Youth Camp.
- We are now receiving more and more requests to help with expenses and bills of returning military personnel. Since our inception, the AOH has distributed over $187,225 to military personnel and their families. Our sole source of income is the picnics and events sponsored by lodges throughout the state and donations made throughout the year. We are also funded by a general purpose card program with the money to be shared between AOH and Hope Scholarship.We have been successful because of the generosity and support of Florida Elks and their friends. All money raised by events such as ‘The Harry-Anna Trust Gala of Hope’ goes to support the troops and their families. There are no administrative costs or salaries.
Your generous support today will allow us to continue to give back to our troops and their families in appreciation for their sacrifice so we may enjoy the freedom we have today. Freedom is not free and many have paid for our freedom with their life. We must never forget them and their families. We, as Elks, pledge, WE WILL NEVER FORGET!
Thank you for your support today. GOD bless the United States of America and GOD bless and protect the brave men and women of our Armed Forces and their families.
To learn more about the Florida Elks Army of Hope,