In 2018, OneMain Financial partnered with Operation Gratitude, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to helping U.S. military, their families, and first responder communities. We pledged $20,000 to the organization and hosted a company-wide collection drive in our branches and corporate offices across the country to gather much-needed items for care packages.
The following is an interview with Brad Borchers, executive vice president for branch operations at OneMain, and Samantha O’Neil, senior director of communications for Operation Gratitude, to learn about this organization, our partnership, and how our customers and team members can help.
Can you tell us a little bit about Operation Gratitude?
Samantha O’Neil: Our mission is to lift the spirits and meet the evolving needs of the military and first responder communities, and to provide volunteer opportunities for Americans to express their appreciation to all who serve. Over the years, Operation Gratitude has sent more than 2.1 million of its signature care packages to first responders, new recruits, veterans, wounded heroes and individually named U.S. service members deployed overseas, as well as their families waiting at home.
Brad Borchers: Every single day our servicemen and servicewomen put their lives on the line to protect our freedom, and we count it as an honor to give back. For the month of November, OneMain is hosting a collection drive for these care packages at more than 1,500 branches, as well as our corporate locations. We are proud to join Operation Gratitude on its mission to thank everyone who serves our nation.
What do the care packages mean to those who get them and how can OneMain customers help?
SO: We send more than 250,000 care packages each year. Each package is filled with food, entertainment, personal hygiene products and hand-made items. In addition, each package includes personal letters of support written by grateful Americans. They help recipients know that their service and sacrifice is appreciated by those they serve and protect. And, for deployed service members, the care packages provide high-quality items that are not only useful, but also a nice reminder of home.
BB: We are collecting personal items at all of our branches. In particular, Operation Gratitude has asked for hand warmers, lip balm, travel-size deodorant, travel-size body/hand wipes and black crew socks. All donations should be new and sealed.
What does the partnership between OneMain and Operation Gratitude mean to you?
BB: November is designated as our Customer Appreciation Month, which we celebrate in our branches across the country. In addition, we also recognize Veterans Day and Military Family Month during November. Partnering with Operation Gratitude provides the perfect opportunity to help lift the spirits and meet the needs of our nation’s military members, first responders and their families by helping our customers and team members give back.
SO: We are so thankful for the passion and dedication of the 525,000 Operation Gratitude volunteers around the country, including the employees and customers of OneMain Financial, who contribute to our mission to thank all who serve. Together, we are helping to bridge the divide that exists between those who serve in uniform and grateful Americans everywhere who want to express their support.