SARASOTA/BRADENTON, FL – In advance of Flag Day, Goodwill Manasota has again this year volunteered to serve as a drop-off location for U.S. flags that have become too worn or damaged to display. Bins will be available at all retail stores and attended donation centers in Sarasota and Manatee counties for drop-off. One of these flags will be ceremonially retired during the Sunday, June 12 community-wide event, “You’re A Grand Old Flag,” at Patriot Plaza; the rest will be retired by veteran units located in Sarasota and Manatee counties.
In 2013, the Military Officers Association of Sarasota (MOAS) and the Sarasota County School District launched the “American Flag Protocol Initiative,” which aims to educate community members about the origin, history and meaning of the American Flag, the importance of patriotism and respect for the flag, and the proper protocols for the flag’s display and retirement. One component of the Initiative is to conduct an annual flag collection and retirement ceremony for old and/or damaged flags. Goodwill is one of 32 veteran organizations collecting flags at locations throughout the community.
“We are so grateful to Goodwill for partnering with MOAS and other veterans organizations in the community to increase public awareness of the proper respect, etiquette and protocol due the flag, including ensuring that unserviceable flags are properly retired,” said MOAS board member LTC (Ret) Tom Piazze. “In addition, we greatly appreciate Goodwill’s efforts to advocate for and provide services to local veterans and their families in need.”
“The American flag is one of the most widely recognized and respected national emblems in the world. It is a powerful symbol of our country’s courage, compassion and strength. For the veterans we serve, it truly represents the sacrifices they have made for our freedom and the pride they feel in serving our country,” said Goodwill Manasota president and CEO Bob Rosinsky. “We are proud to honor Flag Day by helping to ensure that unserviceable flags are retired properly.”
“You’re A Grand Old Flag,” which is being presented by MOAS and the POPS Orchestra of Bradenton and Sarasota, takes place from 6-7:30 p.m. at Patriot Plaza, Sarasota National Cemetery. The event is free and open to the public; guests are encouraged to bring a cushion or lawn chair. For more information, go to starsandstripescelebration.com.
For a complete listing of Goodwill retail stores and attended donation centers, go to experiencegoodwill.org.
About Goodwill Manasota
Goodwill Manasota is an industry-leading, 501(c)(3), not-for-profit organization that changes lives through the power of work. With the sales of donated goods and philanthropic donations, Goodwill is able to assist people with disabilities and other barriers to employment by providing job skills training and employment opportunities. In 2014, Goodwill Manasota served more than 16,000 people, placed 680 people in jobs and assisted 520 veterans as they reintegrated back into the civilian workforce. Goodwill Manasota’s economic impact back to the community is worth $81.3 million. Goodwill is one of the pioneers of the reduce-reuse-recycle movement and this past year diverted 39 million pounds out of the landfill. We accomplish our mission through a network of Good Neighbor Centers in Sarasota, Manatee, Hardee and DeSoto counties and our Mission Development Services (MDS) around North America. Goodwill Manasota is accountable to a local Board of Directors. Goodwill Manasota in essence belongs to this community, and is not owned by any individual or company. For more information, visit www.experiencegoodwill.org.