May 08, 2017
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., May 8, 2017 – The Home Front Cares has hired Eric Evans as executive director, effective May 1. He is replacing Linda J. Boedeker, a professional transition executive, who led the organization as interim director for the past seven months and guided the selection process.
At Catholic Charities of Central Colorado since 2010, first as client services manager and most recently as vice president of Income and Relief Services, Evans and his teams served more than 200,000 individuals and families with transportation, clothing, food and other necessities of life. In just the past year, he led the development of the Life Skills and Career Development Center, which put 170 individuals to work – and helped keep them working. He also stewarded the development of and growth of the Family Day Center program, which has provided respite and housing connections to more than 400 adults and children this year alone.
“Eric Evans is a strategic and effective leader with a passion for serving citizens connected to the military,” said Board Chairman Andy Cain, Ph.D. “Eric brings a fresh perspective for instituting programs and administering services to The Home Front Cares clients. We are fortunate to have found someone of his caliber to help meet the increasing demand for financial aid and referral services.”
At The Home Front Cares, Evans will lead the organization, which provides more than $400,000 annually in direct financial support to pay landlords and utility companies and assist with vehicle payments and repairs on behalf of Colorado military families when they experience dire financial need.
“I’m honored to be named executive director of The Home Front Cares. I’ve joined a team dedicated to supporting Colorado military, veterans and their families who serve or have served their country in defense of our nation’s freedoms,” Evans said. “It’s a privilege to work alongside a staff, a board of directors, and an advisory board that are so deeply passionate about assisting clients with grants to pay essential life expenses.”
ABOUT THE HOME FRONT CARES
The Home Front Cares provides an emergency financial bridge and responsive support to Colorado military members, veterans and their families impacted by service to our Nation.
Since 2003, the nonprofit has raised funds to pay essential life expenses like rent and utilities for clients statewide. According to GuideStar, only 10 percent of the 45,000 registered nonprofits serving veterans nationwide provide more than $250,000 per year in aid to clients; The Home Front Cares is among them.
Last fiscal year, The Home Front Cares provided direct financial assistance to more than 300 Colorado families, positively impacting 472 children. Over 1,255 veterans and their families received referrals to include crucial mental health and financial counseling, benefits and food assistance.
For more information about The Home Front Cares, visit thehomefrontcares.org.
Apr 13, 2017
Join The Home Front Cares on September 22, 2017 at The Broadmoor as we welcome Retired United States Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills of the 82nd Airborne at our 13th annual For The Love Of Our Troops dinner, sponsored by Loaf 'N Jug. Mills lives an inspiring story of courage, strength and perseverance.
Thousands of soldiers die each year to defend their country. United States Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills was sure that he would become another statistic when, during his third tour of duty in Afghanistan, he was caught in an IED blast while on patrol on April 10, 2012 -- four days before his twenty-fifth birthday. Against the odds, he lived, but at a severe cost—Travis became one of only five soldiers from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to survive a quadruple amputation.
Suddenly forced to reconcile with the fact that he no longer had arms or legs, Travis was faced with a future drastically different from the one he had imagined for himself. He would never again be able to lead his squad, hold his wife’s hand, or pick up his infant daughter.
Travis struggled through the painful and anxious days of rehabilitation so that he could regain the strength to live his life to the fullest. With enormous willpower and endurance, the unconditional love of his family, and a generous amount of faith, Travis shocked everyone with his remarkable recovery. Even without limbs, he still swims, dances with his wife, rides mountain bikes, and drives his daughter to school.
Travis inspires thousands every day with his remarkable journey. He doesn’t want to be thought of as wounded. “I’m just a man with scars,” he says, “living life to the fullest and best I know how.”
Travis Mills’ keynote speech teaches and inspires audiences nationwide to “Never give up. Never quit.” no matter the obstacles or circumstances. Mills’ larger-than-life personality, sense of humor and incredible spirit for life engages audiences from the moment he takes center stage. SSG Travis Mills is a genuine American hero, and for his incredible sacrifice, we are forever in his debt.
Mills’ story also inspired the creation of the documentary Travis: A Soldier’s Story which played in theaters nationwide and has been featured on local and national news including Fox News’ Happening Now with Jenna Lee, The O’Reilly Factor with Bill O’Reilly and CNN with Barbara Starr.
For those interested in registering for a seat, table or sponsorship at THFC's 2017 For The Love Of Our Troops annual dinner, please contact Christina Webb at firstname.lastname@example.org or 719-209-4613.
View photos from last year's annual dinner here.
Feb 21, 2017
The application period for The Home Front Cares' Executive Director position is now closed.
The Home Front Cares (THFC) is a nonprofit organization headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado and serves the entire state of Colorado. The mission is to provide emergency and responsive support and grants for Colorado's military members, veterans and their families who have been impacted by service to our Nation. The vision is that The Home Front Cares emergency financial bridge provides hope for a brighter future to our Colorado military members, veterans and their families. THFC began as an all-volunteer organization in 2003 and has grown to a statewide organization with a budget of 1.1 million and six staff members. THFC is known for compassion, responsiveness and cooperation.
Jan 18, 2017
The Home Front Cares is proud to be one of the recipient agencies of the Empty Stocking Fund, an annual fundraising campaign that provides resources for 20 health and human services agencies throughout the Pikes Peak Region. The Empty Stocking Fund works hand-in-hand with Gazette Charities to raise critical funding for these organizations every year. The year, the Gazette wrote feature stories about each agency and the clients that they help.
Click here to read the story of Tom* and his wife, who faced setbacks due to medical issues and just couldn't make ends meet. The Home Front Cares was able to step in and offer support when they had nowhere else to turn.
For more information on the Empty Stocking Fund, please visit www.fillanemptystocking.org.
Jan 04, 2017
(Colorado Springs, CO) -- On December 1, a group of Lockheed Martin executives and their spouses joined The Home Front Cares staff and volunteers to assemble 350 “Welcome Home Bags,” filled with basic necessities, for veterans this holiday season.
One of the largest defense contractors in the United States, the Lockheed Martin Space Systems division is based in Littleton, Colorado. Lockheed Martin has been one of the largest supporters of The Home Front Cares since the nonprofit organization was founded in 2003, contributing over $300,000 in critical financial support as well as countless hours of volunteer time. The company also employs a large number of veterans and indeed continues to stay true to their slogan: “we never forget who we’re working for.”
"It was heartwarming to experience Lockheed Martin’s interest and financial support of THFC but also their willingness to spend a portion of their afternoon filling ‘welcome home bags’ for our veterans,” said THFC Board Member, Carolyn DeKok. “We were grateful to be able to share more in depth information about our mission! Thank you, Lockheed Martin!"
The Welcome Home Bags contain items such as shampoo, toothbrushes and toothpaste, razors, deodorant, chap stick and soap. The bags are intended to offer a bit of relief to clients who are facing a financial crisis, which often prevents them from being able to afford even basic essentials. Many of these clients are facing eviction or a utility disconnect, and some are even living out of their vehicles.
The Home Front Cares has also shared a number of the bags with other nonprofit agencies throughout the Pikes Peak Region who work with veterans, such as Ecumenical Social Ministries the Vet Center and Rocky Mountain Human Services.
THFC Media Contact:
Christina Webb, Development Manager
Dec 13, 2016
(Colorado Springs, Colo.)--In honor of Veteran’s Day 2016 Honest Accurate Auto Service, in partnership with Castrol, donated 200 free oil changes to disabled veterans in the Pikes Peak Region.
The first 100 oil changes were donated to The Home Front Cares for distribution to the organization’s clients. “We are extremely appreciative of Honest Accurate Auto Service’s gift,” stated The Home Front Cares Development Director, Christina Webb. “Any additional assistance that we can offer to our clients to get them back on track is important to the overall mission of caring for these families.”
Honest Accurate Auto Service will be issuing the remaining 100 free Oil Change Service Veteran’s Vouchers to qualifying veterans for use at either of their two Colorado Springs locations: 3905 Tutt Blvd or 426 Nevada Mesa View. These vouchers can be redeemed by appointment through 3/30/2017.
Paul Pharris, one of the company’s owners, is a veteran himself and understands the various challenges that our service members face after separation or retirement from the military. Many of The Home Front Cares’ clients rely on just one family car for transportation and for some veteran families, their vehicle is their home. Proper vehicle maintenance is essential so that individuals can travel independently to work, school or medical appointments. When a veteran has the ability to maintain a job, he or she has the ability to provide for the family. These oil changes will go a long way in making a difference to 200 veterans and their families.
For more information on what Honest Accurate Auto Service is doing for veterans or to get your Oil Change Service Veteran’s Voucher, please visit their website: http://honestaccurateauto.com/veterans/
Dec 13, 2016
(Colorado Springs, Colo.)--Several local organizations used their love of golf to support The Home Front Cares and Colorado veterans’ families this year, showcasing each group’s commitment to the nonprofit and the local military community.
Parsons brought in the largest sum for the nonprofit this year with a donation of $5,100. After an initial donation of $3,900, Parsons contributed an additional $1,200 in response to the success of the tournament to help further The Home Front Cares’ mission and match the already generous contribution of the sponsors.
Larry Brachfeld, a Parsons project manager and an organizer of the tournament, stated, “Parsons is pleased to support this extremely worthy organization again by sponsoring an annual golf tournament. Over the past 4 years, we have grown our overall contribution from just over $1,000 to more than $5,000 this year.”
Gleneagle Sertoma, whose mission is to “serve our communities and improve the lives of those who need help,” raised $5,000 for The Home Front Cares through its tournament, aptly named the Patriotic Golf Benefit. This event was held at the prestigious Garden of the Gods Golf Resort at Kissing Camels, and the enthusiasm for The Home Front Cares was evident in the number of golfers the event drew as well as the number of volunteers assisting.
The Tri-Lakes Lions Club is one of The Home Front Cares’ newer supporters via golf, and each year its tournament continues to grow and help the nonprofit reach new audiences and build awareness. The Home Front Cares will be receiving $1,500 from the club’s fundraising efforts.
The St. Gabriel & John Vianney Knights of Columbus Council #12335 chose The Home Front Cares for the first time as a benefiting charity for its golf tournament. The event was met with an overwhelmingly positive response from sponsors and the community, which allowed the Knights to donate $4,700 to the organization. Many of the Knights are veterans themselves or have family who are current or former military.
THFC Media Contact:
Christina Webb, Development Manager
Oct 20, 2016
(Colorado Springs, Colo.)— The Home Front Cares announces an important leadership transition for the organization.
April Speake, long-term Executive Director for The Home Front Cares, accepted an opportunity with the Colorado Springs Utilities in September. The organization has hired Linda J. Boedeker as the Interim Executive Director.
Linda has worked as a professional interim director for the past eight years with such nonprofits as Ecumenical Social Ministries, Sangre de Cristo Arts Center, and Pikes Peak Urban League. Linda was part of the 2010 transition team that helped The Home Front Cares transform from an all-volunteer organization to professional staff. Linda is also a senior trainer with The Grantsmanship Center, where she provides nationwide grant proposal writing workshops for nonprofit and government organizations.
Under April’s leadership, The Home Front Cares transitioned from a small volunteer organization in the Pikes Peak region to a vibrant, respected nonprofit agency serving the entire state of Colorado. Today, The Home Front Cares provides assistance to financially at-risk active duty, veterans and their families throughout Colorado. “April Speake led us through great growth, from an all-volunteer, local organization to a vibrant nonprofit with an annual budget over a million dollars a year,” said Andy Cain, The Home Front Cares’ board chairman.
Cain said Boedeker will lead the nonprofit through a “transformative time” and will assist in the search for a permanent executive director. “Today, The Home Front Cares serves veterans throughout Colorado, and they need our help more than ever. Linda’s leadership will help us continue to meet the growing need during our search.”
The organization will distribute a formal job announcement to fill the permanent director role within the next few months.
THFC Media Contact:
Christina Webb, Development Manager
Oct 18, 2016
Click here for photos from this year's event with Maj. Jaster.
The Home Front Cares 2016 "For The Love Of Our Troops" Annual Dinner was held on October 14 at The Broadmoor International Center. This year's speaker was Major Lisa Jaster -- Army Reservist, Engineer, Mother and Army Ranger. Over 750 guests attended the dinner to hear Maj. Jaster speak and to support The Home Front Cares and Colorado military and veteran families.
Lisa is one of three women to graduate from the inaugural Ranger training class to include women for the first time ever in 2015. There were 19 other women in that class and Lisa was by far the oldest of anyone, both men and women. Most who attend Ranger school are active duty troops, male and in their 20s. Lisa was 37, an officer in the Army Reserves, full time engineer with the Shell Oil Company and a mother of two young children.
“I was the unicorn,” Lisa says. “When they saw me, it was like spotting a unicorn. It was odd, funny, they didn’t know how to act. That was the feedback I got. But, each group, there was a single moment where they transitioned to I was just Ranger Jaster. I stopped being the girl, I stopped being the female, I stopped being the unicorn and I became their battle buddy, their Ranger buddy, their peer. Each of those little spikes reminded me why I went, which was just to prove that you should expect higher. Expect more.”
"Many of our clients face times when they feel defeated and as if they simply can't go on," said former THFC Executive Director, April Speake prior to the dinner. "The message of perseverance is one that is important to all of us, but especially those who have fought bravely on the military battlefield, but now feel as if they have nowhere to turn. Lisa will speak to us about the importance of pushing on, moving forward and overcoming obstacles, just as she has done."
The dinner was attended by many distinguished guests, including The Honorable John Suthers, Mayor of the City of Colorado Springs and our First Lady of Colorado Springs, Janet Suthers; Major General Dan York, the Reserve Advisor to the Commander of NORAD & US Northern Command; Brigadier General Richard Heitkamp, and his wife, Shannon, representing the Commander NORAD & US Northern Command; Vice Superintendent Colonel David Harris and his wife, Ashley, representing the Air Force Academy; Garrison Commander at Fort Carson, Colonel Ron Fitch and his wife Jenn; Colonel Troy Dunn, the 10th Air Base Wing Commander, and his wife Sonya; Colonel Miles Brown, Chief of Staff, and his wife Jaime, representing the 4th Infantry Division & Ft Carson Commander; Command Chief Master Sergeant Brendan Criswell, representing Commander, Air Force Space Command; Command Sergeant Major Michael Crosby, representing the soldiers of Ft Carson and the 4th Infantry Division.
Click here to watch Part I of the U.S. Army's video, 'Earning the Tab,' about Lisa and her transformative journey.
Old Glory Sponsors:
Good Citizen Sponsors:
VIP Reception Sponsors:
Oct 04, 2016
(Colorado Springs, Colo.) Loaf ‘N Jug and The Home Front Cares are launching a two-pronged effort this fall to aid Colorado veterans and military families in need.
On Oct. 6, the neighborhood convenience store chain launches a two-month donation campaign in all 98 Colorado store locations.Customers can purchase donation “support cards” for $1 or more, and write their names on the support cards. All cards will then be hung in the stores where the donations are made, so each store’s neighborhood can show its support for the nonprofit and the veterans they serve.
“These donations not only benefit the great services provided by The Home Front Cares, they also let our valued customers show how much they love our troops,” said Art Stawski, President of Loaf ‘N Jug.
The two-month donation drive will be promoted in every store with indoor and outside signage like double-sided door statics, counter mats, and digital watchfire signs calling out the campaign and its purpose. Officials from both organizations hope to raise $25,000 over the drive.
In the second prong of this growing partnership, Pueblo-headquartered Loaf ‘N Jug is the 2016 title sponsor of The Home Front Cares’ annual dinner, “For the Love of Our Troops.” The fundraising dinner is Oct. 14 at The Broadmoor. This year’s guest speaker is Army Major Lisa Jaster, one of the first women to graduate from U.S. Army Ranger School.
“We have participated in the For the Love of Our Troops dinner for several years, and we are thrilled to be the title sponsor this year,” said Stawski. “We hope that those who cannot attend the dinner will show their support with our in-store campaign.”
To THFC Chairman of the Board, Dr. Andy Cain, the Loaf ‘N Jug partnership marks a milestone for the 13-year-old nonprofit. “I have hoped for so long to have a retail partner who could support our clients with a point of sale donation campaign,” he said. “I am so proud that it is a Colorado company that has done so. Loaf ‘N Jug is providing an amazing opportunity for all Coloradans to support our own.”
THFC Media Contact:
Christina Webb, Development Manager