February 4th is the official birthday of the organization known as United Service Organizations or USO. The USO has been a fixture in military life for more than seven decades. Founded in 1941, the agency is a private, not-for-profit organization working in cooperation with the Department of Defense.
The next USO birthday will be on Thursday, February 4, 2021.
The USO has a congressional charter and receives funding through donations, philanthropy, and corporate support. More than 12 thousand volunteers work with the USO at locations worldwide including military bases, airports, and major metro areas.
The USO, compared to similar non-profit organizations, has a unique and complex history. It actually has roots in six separate organizations including the Salvation Army, the YMCA and YWCA, Catholic Community Services, National Travelers Aid Association and the National Jewish Welfare Board.
These six agencies combined resources to begin the USO, and troops fighting in World War Two were the first to benefit from the existence of the organization.
Celebrating The Birthday of the USO
During the month of February, the USO itself will organize activities and events to honor its long history, and military bases all over the world-more than 200 locations-will have local activities to show their appreciation. From Darwin, Australia to Afghanistan, there are likely to be hundreds of individual local celebrations.
One of the best ways to help celebrate the USO birthday is to attend a USO-programmed or supported event at a military base, at a USO location in a major airport, etc. But the USO also needs volunteers, donations, and participation.
Donations to the USO may be tax deductible, but you can also participate or volunteer to organize fundraising efforts for the USO, which is a good choice for those who want to help raise a larger amount of funds than their individual contributions may provide.
Did you know that the USO is one of the many charitable organizations that are supported by the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC)? Through CFC, federal employees donate to the nonprofits of their choice through the annual Combined Federal Campaign.
Military members and family who are federal employees can designate contributions to the USO via the Combined Federal Campaign as well as volunteering time, resources, etc.