Austin Yellow Ribbon preparing for designation
Local military families, veterans and active soldiers may soon have an official resource for social issues and everyday burdens.
Beyond the Yellow Ribbon, a program that creates a network of locals that helps military families in need, may have an official designation by this fall.
While the local group’s efforts have not been approved by the local National Guard or deemed as an official Beyond the Yellow Ribbon organization by the state, lead organizer Paul Spyhalski said about 30 to 40 people are on an email list as potential helpers.
“I would say by fall, we should be there,” Spyhalski said about receiving the designation. “Hopefully sooner.”
The network of volunteers could help burdened military families with many tasks. Volunteers could change oil on cars, mow lawns, watch kids, fix leaks and do a menagerie of other tasks.
Spyhalski said another BYR meeting will be held at noon on June 20 at City Hall, and a steering committee meeting will be 6:30 p.m. June 21 at the VFW. And the network of potential volunteers is already going beyond simply helping people. Some have organized a military all stars baseball game for July 13, in which local servicemembers will take on the Austin Greyhounds. Among several family re-integration academies for returning soldiers, a military family picnic is being planned for August, as well.
Those interested in joining beyond the Yellow Ribbon can contact Spyhalski at prspyhal@ yahoo.com.