Members of Operation V.E.T. surprised more than a dozen kids from Blue Star families last week in San Diego. The kids, who have at least one parent as an active-duty service member, were presented with custom-built skateboards and given a demonstration by local pro skaters.
"A lot of times we focus our efforts on the veterans those serving overseas, but we need to remember that it's an entire family sacrifice being in the military," said Simon Huber, who co-chairs Operation V.E.T. The group gather 60 Blue Shield and Blue Shield Promise employees to build the skateboards.
It's the second year, Operation V.E.T., an employee resource group at Blue Shield of California, surprised Blue Star kids. Last year, the group presented bikes.
“Service to the community is part of our identity as an organization – in fact, three quarters of all Blue Shield employees have participated in volunteer activities this year,” said David Bond, LCSW, Director of Behavioral Health at Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan.
"It's tough on the kids," said Terrigen Allen-Orozco, a case manager for Blue Shield. "It's hard to be left behind and miss holidays. We hope that these skateboards can give them something to do and pass a little time."