Getting a group of people together can prove to be pretty difficult. Any number of things could get in the way – travel issues, illnesses, etc. If you’d like to get together with your old Military Buddies but don’t think a physical reunion is possible, consider meeting up virtually. That way, you can reconnect with your Veteran friends from the comfort of your own home.
Keep reading to learn about receiving a free device, video call applications, how to get everyone together, and what to do in your online reunion.
You May be Eligible for a Free Device
Don’t have a device with a camera? Not a problem. Facebook has teamed up with the American Red Cross Military Veteran Caregiver Network to provide free Portal devices to those who qualify.
According to the VA’s VAntage Point Blog,
Facebook donated over 7,400 Portal video calling devices for Veterans and their Caregiver or family member. Veterans and families in VA’s Office of Caregiver Support program, VA’s Geriatric Services and Extended Care program, or individuals identified as at-risk for suicide by a VA provider are eligible to receive Portals through this program.
Read more about this program here.
Video Platforms to Use
With so many companies offering video call services, it may be difficult to decide which one you’d like to use.
The most common application to use is Zoom. It can support large calls, so no matter how big your reunion is, you’ll be good to go. This app is incredibly easy to use and has a customer support team that can help you and your friends set up your video chat if there is any confusion. Plus, it’s free to use!
Getting Everyone Together
Getting the word out about your reunion may seem like a daunting task, but this will be the easiest part of your entire virtual reunion setup process.
All you need to do is head to VetFriend’s Reunions Calendar page, add the info for your event, and you’re set! This website has over 2 million Veteran members, so whether you’re looking to meet with buddies from your basic training days or your unit brothers, they’re sure to find and RSVP to your reunion.
If you’d like the opportunity to meet some new buddies that have the same background/interests as you, consider looking at and contacting those listed on the Veteran Organizations Page.
There, you can search for Vet Organizations based on:
- State where the Organization is located
- Branch (Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, or Coast Guard)
- Campaign (Vietnam, Cold War, Desert Storm, Afghanistan, Iraqi Freedom, Korea)
- Other (Veterans of Foreign Wars, Women, Ex-POW’S, Motorcycle Clubs)
Things to Do
The virtual setting is no different than a physical one.
You can spend your time reminiscing on all the crazy things you did as a young man or woman, and catch up on how everyone’s lives have gone since the last time you spoke with them.
Chances are, you’ll have a great time catching up with your friends. Consider making the call once a week, or once a month. Everyone needs a buddy check once in a while!