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Posts Tagged ‘Pepsi Refresh’

Alfredo De los santos is afraid.

The Army staff sergeant survived an RPG attack on his humvee in Iraq two years ago. His right leg was amputated at the hip, and he’s still struggling to get the right fit on his prosthetic. He has severe PTSD and TBI. That means nightmares, crippling headaches, fear of crowds and other physical issues. He undergoes daily treatments at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.

He’s braved tragedies and the horrors of war in his past, but it’s the future that fills him with fear.

“I’m very scared right now,” he told me over the phone. “I don’t even have a job. And I have issues with my family. Because of what I’m going through, they don’t understand.”

His family had to move back to New York. His wife and two kids have been through a lot, he told me. It was easier for them to return to familiar surroundings than stay by his side in Washington, D.C. The kids changed schools three times in one year to be with him. It was too much.

He recently moved in to Operation Homefront Village-DC. It’s one of two transitional housing facilities Operation Homefront runs. Wounded warriors and their families live in free, fully furnished apartments convenient to treatment. Residents can take classes on financial management, career guidance, counseling and more.

It’s all free, thanks in part Combined Federal Campaign contributions.

Despite his fears, Alfredo is also hopeful — and grateful.

“Thank you so much for your support and for helping me and my family to make my transition a little bit easier,” he said. “I wish that in the future I can give something back.”

You can give back by designating Operation Homefront (No. 12526) as one of your charities of choice for your CFC contribution. You can also help with your daily votes in the Pepsi Refresh contest. We’ve teamed up with a slate of other military nonprofits to encourage support. Please take a moment to help.

We truly appreciate it.


Alfredo De los santos is one of the residents at Operation Homefront Village-DC.

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By Catherine McCarthy (We’d link to her FB page, but it’s DOWN.)

1. PANIC!!!
2. Told everyone on Twitter that Facebook was down
3. Posited several conspiracy theories about it
4. Swore off Facebook
5. Cried
6. Actually went outside…hurt my eyes
7. Went back to talking about Pepsi Refresh

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Cake and ice cream. Saturday and Sunday. Sideshow Bob and Krusty the Clown. They’re all better together than on their own.

It’s a lesson several military charities have taken to heart as they work to win the Pepsi Refresh program. This grant competition has been running monthly contests; charities with the highest number of online votes can win $5,000, $25,000, $50,000 or $250,000.

Competition is fierce, but so is loyal support. Rather than dividing and conquering, military aid charities are banding together for Tag Team for the Troops. Each registered visitor gets up to 10 votes a day, so this group is encouraging all of their supporters to vote for other organizations that serve the military community.

It’s a great way to pool resources and keep the focus where it belongs: Proving how small things add up to make a difference for our military families.

So we at Operation Homefront and our friends at Operation Gratitude are casting our votes for these other nonprofits who need and deserve a Pepsi grant.

We hope you will, too.

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