Courtesy of Shannon Bentham

I Help America’s Veterans

Jackson Bentham, 12, has a special way of lending a hand to veterans. Here's his story, in his own words.

It’s pretty common to see military officers and veterans in my town. That’s because I live near Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. But in August 2018, I met one veteran I’ll never forget. 

The man was sitting on the side of the street outside a gas station. After asking my mom if it was OK, I brought him a bottle of water. The man told me he had served in the military in the war in Afghanistan, a country in Asia. When he got back to the U.S., he had a hard time readjusting to civilian life and lost his home. I knew I had to help. 

A Helping Hand

I contacted a local veteran support group. They needed supplies, like toilet paper, to give to homeless veterans. So I started a food and toiletry drive at my school. I held raffles to raise money for more supplies. Last November, I donated more than 2,000 rolls of toilet paper along with other goods. 

In May, I was honored to receive the Prudential Spirit of Community Award. It was nice to be recognized, but I didn’t stop there. I’m still collecting goods. My goal is to create my own organization someday to help homeless veterans. 

People in the military fight for our freedom. Veterans Day is a great holiday. But we should be honoring veterans every day of the year.

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