The USO strengthens America’s service members by keeping them connected to family, home and country throughout their service to the nation. Bob Hope USO supports 285,000+ military service members and their families throughout Southern and Central California, including the Coachella Valley, comprised of eight USO Centers, a mobile USO sprinter van, and on dozens of military installations across 51,000 square miles.
In addition to serving Military and their families passing through the Palm Springs Airport Center and the newly opened center on Twentynine Palms Marine Corps Base, Bob Hope USO provides mobile programming support to the service members and families stationed at Twentynine Palms by hosting events like holiday gatherings, serving coffee, food, and distributing goodie bags, and delivering grab-and-go “USO2GO” kits for deploying service members. In 2020, the Bob Hope USO Palm Springs team received an unprecedented number of requests for quarantine-support items, like hygiene necessities and activity kits, socially-distanced family programming events, and mission delivery to the National Guard members deployed to support COVID-19 response initiatives.
Each year, Bob Hope USO provides thousands of holiday meals for military service members and their families, including festive meals and gatherings for holiday events, and providing opportunities to connect with peers and friends – especially those who are spending the holidays without their loved ones present. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, some holiday events were modified to accommodate health restrictions in place, and provided supplementary support to the many service members who were not granted block leave, which normally provides them time to travel home to visit with family and friends. To bring a little piece of the holidays to Twentynine Palms, Palm Springs Center volunteers hosted an outdoor pancake breakfast.
The USO is committed to providing services to Military and their families as we enter 2021 facing similar challenges introduced in 2020. The global pandemic provided USO teams the opportunity to find new ways to reach our service members and keep them connected to family, home and country. Whether it be addressing food insecurity through expeditionary programs at remote “tough-duty” stations, or providing online, virtual educational and activity programming for military spouses and children, the USO remains by their side, even if it is at a distance.
To learn more about the Bob Hope USO programs supporting service members and their families throughout the Coachella Valley, and how to get involved or donate, visit bobhope.uso.org and follow @bobhopeuso on social media.