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Family Story

Military Spouse Grateful for Family Support Services

By Operation Homefront

February 28, 2024

Military Spouse Grateful for Family Support Services

With inflation causing food and other everyday costs to rise, Army wife Melissa Clark is always looking for deals to help maximize the family budget. 

She regularly checks Operation Homefront’s social media pages to see what kind of family service programs may be happening in her area. 

Most recently, she attended a Holiday Meals for Military (HMFM) families this summer to celebrate July Fourth.  

Melissa first heard about the nonprofit when she was a Family Readiness Group leader at Fort Campbell in 2017. 

“We participate in as many programs as we can,” she said. “I’ve done the Holiday Meals, Back-to-School® Brigade and the toy giveaway at Christmas.” 

 One of the reasons she enjoys HMFM is because the gift card makes it easier for them while traveling.  

“Holiday Meals for Military 100 percent helps offset inflation and rising costs.” – Melissa Clark, military spouse

Thanks to generous donors such as Safeway and Raytheon, Melissa’s family was one of 350 served during a HMFM event held at John Venezia Park, in Colorado Springs, Colorado, in June. Participants received a $50 gift card from Safeway, along with a summer picnic bag that included a branded Operation Homefront picnic blanket, reusable silverware kits, and a small snack bag with applesauce, trail mix, cheese crackers, fruit snacks, and juice pouches. It also included a sunscreen pouch with travel-size handwipes.   

Raytheon provided reusable popcorn containers and the funds for the picnic basket.   

Thanks to its generous donors, Operation Homefront has provided more than 680,000 individual holiday meals to service members, veterans, and their families since the HMFM program began in 2010. 

“The picnic blanket was just so cute,” she said. “We take it with us any time we go trail riding with my husband and kids.”  

Melissa is appreciative of Operation Homefront donors who understand that military families need support along with the service member. 

Melissa’s husband, Army Sgt. Joshua Clark, served first in the Army National Guard for 14 years. In 2016, he switched to active duty in the Army. The two knew each other in high school and even dated but lost touch. They reconnected about 10 years ago, and Melissa embarked on the adventure of being a military spouse. 

Joshua has deployed to Iraq and Kuwait. 

The Clark family has been stationed in Colorado Springs at Fort Carson since 2019. 

“Holiday Meals for Military 100 percent helps offset the inflation and rising costs, especially around holiday time,” Melissa said. “I would love to say thank you to the donors because without them this wouldn’t be possible. It makes us feel so supported.” 

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