Amplify Partners Show Up To Support Veterans

Amplify Partners Show Up To Support Veterans

May 2024 Meeting Highlights

may 14, 2024

The room was full as more than 130 Amplify partners and guests spent time in conversation to amplify two organizations working to support Veterans in our community. 

Thank you to all who joined us, including 31 first-time attendees! In case you missed it, here is a quick recap of the evening and a way to connect even further.

MUSICAL GUEST

Peter Borne, shared his gift of music, opening the evening with a song titled “Swear Words” written about his friend’s experience as a Marine. He closed out the evening on ukulele inviting the room to sing along to the familiar Bob Marley tune “Three Little Birds.” 

GUEST SPEAKER

Eric Geesaman, shared his personal experience as a Marine with vulnerability, illuminating the many challenges Veterans face including substance abuse, mental health issues, and PTSD.

After two tours in Afghanistan, Geesaman started noticing symptoms of PTSD creeping up while working as a Recruiter. “I was staying out late, drinking, and trying to do my job in the ways I thought I could, but it progressively got worse.”

It was during the process of deploying for the third time that Geesaman “snapped.” He landed in treatment for mental health and was medically discharged from the Marines shortly after.  

While things were starting to look up for Geesaman, he experienced an intense period of feeling lost. “I went from the strict routine and rigor of the Marines to stocking shelves at my local store. The complete loss of identity and loss of purpose led to me being charged with domestic assault. I thought I was on the road to improvement, but there I was in jail.”

Knowing he needed a new path forward, Geesaman recognized that “giving back to Veterans was going to help me.” Through a few connections, Geesaman found his way to Every Third Saturday (ETS) where he completed the Warriors Return program. Today he works as part of the ETS team in a position where “I get to make an impact on people’s lives.”

He closed with a message of gratitude, “I’m grateful for the opportunity to be here tonight, for the opportunity to do the work I do, and I’m grateful for finding my way back to Christ.” 

MINISTRY IMPACT UPDATE 

Our partner impact story came from Joe Kirk, who shared about the purpose and meaning he has found in serving at Amplify.

PRESENTING MINISTRIES

Tom McKenna, founder of Every Third Saturday (ETS) shared his encounter with a homeless Veteran on the side of the road which sparked the beginnings of ETS. Now seven years later with a new beautiful building in Minneapolis, ETS serves over 3,000 veterans each year. 

McKenna invited Amplify partners to help rework the internship program at Rick’s Coffee Bar to address a $4,000 monthly gap between income and expenses, while maximizing the program impact.  

Tim Murray, Director of Bravo Zulu House shared compelling and heartbreaking statistics about the substance abuse and suicide rates among Veterans. Working to “declare war on PTSD,”, Murray outlined his plan to build the first all-military sober house, giving veterans the support they need coming out of treatment, with a “band of brothers” camaraderie they are accustomed to. 

With just over 50% of the needed funds raised to open the home, Murray invited business leaders to brainstorm how to increase awareness through digital campaigns to quickly reach the fundraising goal. 

Amplify partners then rolled up their sleeves and got to work, sharing ideas, connections, and expertise to help each ministry overcome the barriers presented and reach new levels of impact. 

Julie Eide, President of Amplify wrapped up the evening by sharing a preview of our keynote speaker, Bob Goff, who will be joining us in September for our annual fundraising event.

Eide also announced her plans to retire at the end of 2024, sharing her time leading Amplify, “has been one of the greatest joys of my professional and personal life.” Her news was met with a standing ovation from partners in the room who thanked her for her service. 

In Their Own Words

what guests had to say
“It was another magical evening!"

"It was every bit as welcoming and enjoyable as I was told it would be. I so appreciate being invited to experience what Amplify has to offer."

"The whole experience was so inspiring and empowering. There are so many needs and I enjoyed meeting new people and brainstorming how to help worthy causes."

"I came with no real expectations, but I am leaving wondering who do I know or what can I do to help solve these problems?"

AMP Sessions

can you make it?
Partners are needed to help advance ideas that began at our meeting on Tuesday. Spend one hour in consultation with our ministry partner and meet additional Amplify partners. Together we’ll review the feedback forms and support the ministry in identifying next steps. A Zoom link and full summary report of the ideas and feedback generated at the meeting will be provided after you RSVP.
BravoZuluHouse

Bravo Zulu House

Wednesday, May 22nd
8:00-9:00 am via Zoom 
RSVP to hailey@amplifymission.org

ETS_Standalone-2

Every Third Saturday

Thursday, May 23rd
8:00-9:00 am via Zoom 
RSVP to hailey@amplifymission.org

Mark Your Calendar

next meeting: june 25

Partners in Action

thank you for using your god-given gifts, talents, and networks for significance

Thank you to Jamie Hiner Creations for capturing photos of our May meeting!