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The Mission Continues

Veterans carry on service to their local community

Volunteers from the Tacoma 1st Service Platoon working hard at the Washington Soldier’s Home and Colony. Photo credit: The Mission Continues

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Sept. 8, volunteers from The Mission Continues, the Tacoma 1st Service Platoon, will participate in a National Day of Service at the Washington Soldiers Home and Colony. They will join with the Veteran Conservation Corps and the Washington Department of Veterans Affairs in a project that will turn underutilized land into useable spaces for veterans residing at the home and in the Orting community.

"The Mission Continues is a national nonprofit organization that empowers veterans who are adjusting to life at home to find purpose through community impact," said Sarah Jones, communications manager for The Mission Continues. "Operations in cities across the country deploy veteran volunteers alongside nonprofit partners and community leaders to solve some of the most challenging issues facing our communities: improving community education resources, eliminating food deserts, mentoring at-risk youth and more. Through this unique model, veterans build new skills and networks that help them successfully reintegrate to life after the military while making long-term, sustainable transformations in communities and inspiring future generations to serve."   

The Tacoma 1st Service Platoon's event is part of a four-day commemoration across the country.

"(From) Friday, Sept. 8, through Monday, Sept. 11, post-9/11 veterans in more than thirty-five cities all across the country will report for duty in tribute to the 16th anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001. The Mission Continues has organized ‘United in Service,' a series of service events where veterans and local volunteers will join forces to have a positive impact on tough community challenges and remember those who served and sacrificed in the wake of 9/11," Jones said. "Throughout the course of four days, more than thirty-five service platoons nationwide will lead local service projects to help strengthen their communities."

This will be the third service project at the Soldiers Home for the Tacoma 1st Service Platoon.

"We're working on prepping a field for farming and building raised gardens for ADA-accessible farming. This will be an intense and high-impact project that includes building demolition and debris removal, prairie restoration, development of a native tree nursery and agripreneurship plots, and wetland mitigation and restoration," Jones said. "This project is continuing to build on the foundation set over the last two years for a long-term strategy by the Veterans Conservation Corps to protect the natural resources of the Soldiers Home and surrounding area while unlocking the healing potential of ecotherapy for our veterans."

The service project will be led by veterans from the local Tacoma 1st Service Platoon.

"Both veterans and civilians are welcome, and you don't need to be a member of the platoon to volunteer," Jones said. "We are looking for volunteers of all ages to sign up for a day of service with The Mission Continues. Volunteers can sign up for the service project, and those interested can join the platoon online."

3rd Annual Orting Soldiers Home Agriculture Restoration Project with the Tacoma 1st Service Platoon, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Friday, Sept. 8, Washington Soldiers Home and Colony, 1301 Orting Kapowsin Hwy., Orting, free, 425.214.2117,

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