We helped conceive and organize a groundbreaking two-day policy summit attended by First Lady Michelle Obama on the mental health of military families coping with deployment. We developed the event and its follow-up activities to help the National Military Family Association shape a critical conversation with military and civilian policy leaders about how the U.S. Department of Defense, the Service branches, Congress and the private sector could help improve their support for military children and spouses. Through an intensive literature review and interviews with Subject Matter Experts, we drafted an initial discussion guide for summit participants and organized a Blue Ribbon panel of civilian and military experts to weigh in before, during and after the event. Following the summit, we created a Community Toolkit containing action steps that a variety of stakeholders could undertake to help implement summit recommendations.
We developed the tools and a targeted outreach strategy that helped the Association’s development team raise $2 million in eight months to continue “Operation Purple”, a vital summer program that helps build military children’s resilience and strengthens family bonds. Our team used its wide network to create partnerships with corporate and foundation partners. We helped secure a landmark $1 million gift from Goldman Sachs Gives, and additional funds through a grassroots partnership effort with the Alliance of Fraternal Organizations as well as support from a variety of foundations and major donors.
We also helped secure needed pro bono services that helped the Association bring its vision of creating an app for military spouses to reality. Working with TechNet America, the Association received guidance and support to build out the app. The Association unveiled the product at a luncheon with Eric Schmidt and General Hayden.