Today we’d like to introduce you to Graci Tubbs.
Hi Graci, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
Military Matters was started in November 2015 as part of a project for a gifted class by 9-year-old and fourth-grader Graci Tubbs (now 14 and in 9th grade). After hearing and seeing veterans speak at a school Veterans Day assembly, Graci felt the need to support our military and let the men and women sacrificing their lives for us know people back home cared about them. What started out as a school project collecting supplies from the community and sending care packages from home to the military overseas grew into a nonprofit. In December 2016, Operation: Military Matters became a corporation and on March 16, 2016 became a 501 (c) (3). Today, Graci speaks to civic organizations and the military to let them know about OMM. Her efforts help raise support and donations to continue sending care packages overseas to our military. So far, they have sent more than 5000 care packages to our military all around the world and Graci has raised more than $100,000 to ship the care packages.
In 2020, even with Covid we were able to exceed our goal of shipping out 100 care packages a month and at the end of the year we shipped 1230 to our military overseas!!
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
This year has been a little more challenging as we have had to deal with Covid like everyone else. At first we couldn’t ship care packages because the military wasn’t accepting anything. After they starting taking care of packages again, we didn’t have all our volunteers helping us like we usually do. We continued to pack care packages, just not as many at a time. We also have not been able to get as much funding as we did last year.
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
Graci is a freshman at Seminole High School. She is a straight-A student and is a softball player. She was on a travel ball team this past fall and also played on the high school fall team.
Graci plans on attending college and playing softball.