Patriotism Spotlight: The Travis Manion Foundation
Travis Manion was a First Lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps who gave the ultimate sacrifice on April 29, 2007, while serving his country. He died during combat in the Al Anbar province of Iraq at the age of 26. He was leading an Iraqi army unit during his second tour in Iraq when his group was ambushed and Travis was killed in combat action. He was posthumously awarded the Silver Star and Bronze Star with Valor for his life-saving actions during the fight.
In memorial of Travis, his mother Janet Manion created the Travis Manion Foundation in 2007. With a mission to "empower veterans and families of fallen heroes to develop character in future generations" and a vision "to create a nation of purpose-driven individuals and thriving communities that is built on character," the Travis Manion Foundation continues to do good work on a daily basis. The foundation is headquartered in Doylestown, Pennsylvania.
Here’s a closer look at the Travis Manion Foundation: what it stands for and how it helps the communities it serves.
How Does the Travis Manion Foundation Help the Community?
The Travis Manion Foundation carries forth the legacy of its namesake by instilling character within the community through various events and volunteer service projects that help others. With nine office locations throughout the United States, including its headquarters, the Travis Manion Foundation has a large reach throughout the nation.
Some of the ways that the Foundation volunteers help others and pursue the mission of the Travis Manion Foundation include building homes, collecting and packing donations, working in community gardens, giving speeches to the community with the values of the Foundation in mind and so much more.
Character Does Matter Mentorship Program
The Travis Manion Foundation runs the Character Does Matter (CDM) mentorship program, which focuses on developing the leadership skills of young adults. They do so by working with spending time with local youths and teaching them skills designed to develop positive character traits. The Character Does Matter mentorship program uses both informal discussions and activity-based learning to develop a strong relationship with young adults. Other aspects of the program include team-building exercises and experiential learning challenges.
The Travis Manion Foundation is often looking for committed adults to help create the next generation of good leaders. They accept veterans, survivors, law enforcement and first responder volunteers.
The first step in becoming a mentor is creating a Spartan Development Center account, through which you can access the organization’s many training courses and large resource library. You’ll next have to complete the introductory online course, which helps individuals better understand their own strengths, passions and values. The last step involves attending an in-person or virtual CDM mentor training session that covers everything volunteers need to know before their first day as a mentor.
Marine Corps Marathon
Many individuals who work with the Travis Manion Foundation compete in the Marine Corp Marathon, Philadelphia Distance Run and several other races throughout the year. Calling themselves “Team Travis,” these strong-willed individuals compete to honor Travis Manion’s memory. Manion himself successfully finished the Marine Corps Marathon one year and had signed up to compete again before his untimely death.
The Marine Corps Marathon is one of the largest held in the United States. Also called “The People’s Marathon,” the MCM is the largest marathon to not offer any prize money. The MCM held its first race in 1976.
Team Travis competes in the MCM each year to help raise money for the TMF and honor our fallen heroes. Athletes on Team Travis run in both the 50K and 10K MCM races.
9/11 Heroes Run
In 2007, Travis Manion’s family started the 9/11 Heroes Run. First taking place in Manion’s hometown of Doylestown, PA, the 9/11 Heroes Run is now held in 70 different locations around the world. Runners of all levels are encouraged to participate in the 5K +1M fun run/walk. All proceeds from the race support the foundation in its endeavors.
Find Out More About the Travis Manion Foundation
Learning more about the Travis Manion Foundation and lending a hand is easy to do. Visit the Foundation website and see if you have an office location near you. If not, don't worry. You can still volunteer with the Travis Manion Foundation. Simply identify a need in your community, express how you'd like to help, then reach out to the Foundation for more details.
Travis Manion and the Travis Manion Foundation embody the true meaning of patriotism. This organization is one anyone can feel good supporting, because it does so much good in the name of someone who committed his life to embodying selflessness. Whether you choose to volunteer your time or make a monetary donation to the organization, know that every little bit matters—and is appreciated.
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