A BTS Look at How the Blue Star Families Dayton Chapter Launch Went Down

August 21, 2020

We’ve been anxiously waiting to welcome our newest Chapter in Dayton, Ohio, to the family. After pressing pause on the launch earlier this year due to COVID-19, we’re excited to finally reveal how the event went down on Tuesday, August 18th—in a social-distancing-approved way, of course!


The Partnership

First things first, the newest Chapter to our family wouldn’t be possible without CSX, a #BlueStarNeighbor. Through its Pride in Service program, the company is committed to honoring and serving those who serve our country and its communities—our nation’s veterans, military, and first responders. 

Together, we can achieve our mission to build a strong community of support for #MilFams currently living and serving in the Buckeye State.


The Why

Are you curious why we chose Dayton, Ohio, to be home to the next Blue Star Chapter location? 

Because approximately 836,000+ service members, Department of Defense (DoD) civilians, and veterans call this community home. However, there’s still an unmet opportunity for Blue Star Families to provide virtual and in-person resources and support.

So we’re committed to establishing a lasting, year-round presence within and around Dayton. And to do that, we hired a full-time, local Chapter Director, Geri Maples, thanks to the support of CSX!


The Launch Celebration

Geri has been hard at work within the community to put together an impactful launch event. While the 2020-2021 school year may look a little different, she partnered with the Dayton VA Medical Center to host an Operation Tools for School drive-thru event on Tuesday, August 18th, for military-connected students in the region. 

42 registered families attended, taking home a gift bag featuring a variety of school supplies and a Facebook Portal to help ensure a successful, fulfilling academic school year (even in a virtual setting!).

“Just wanted to say thank you for supporting the Blue Star Families Chapter that started in Dayton. We were able to participate in Tools for School yesterday and it was a huge surprise for my kids to receive a FB portal (my 8-year-old asked if it was a portal to another dimension LOL). My boys are so excited to video call their dad later this week since he’s away for Army training. As a National Guard family (and former active-duty family) I often feel that National Guard families aren’t remembered or included in a lot of events because things are often geared towards only active duty. It was a really nice way to be able to remind my children they are valued military kids too and they matter. So I just wanted to say again thank you […] Blue Star Families [for bringing] a Chapter to our area.” – Tiffany O.

What’s Next?

This event is just the beginning of many more exciting opportunities that will be available through the new Dayton Chapter. 

Whether you’re a military family looking for support or a civilian neighbor wanting to help, join Blue Star Families of Dayton here, and follow along on the Chapter landing page and Facebook page.

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