OSWEGO – You may have seen them running in Oswego with their American flags flying and wondered who are these people clad in red, white and blue. Well they are more than just a running club; they are the Oswego chapter of Team Red, White and Blue, a national non-profit organization dedicated to enriching the lives of America’s veterans by connecting them to their community through physical and social activity.
For the month of May, Recognizing Oswego County’s theme was military appreciation and Team RWB was selected its Community Champion.
ROC President Penny Morley noted the joint benefits between Team RWB Oswego members and the community. “In addition to fitness related activities, the local chapter of Team RWB volunteers at local events and assists with community service projects. These activities not only give members social support they may need since leaving the military, but they also provide welcome assistance with local events and projects,” Morley said.
Team RWB’s local leader, Nate Beasley echoed this sentiment and explained that many veterans return from years of service and have trouble reintegrating with society.
According to Beasley, “Team RWB gives veterans and civilians that sense of purpose back, that feeling that they are a part of something bigger than themselves. We enable them to make authentic connections and relationships, giving them back the sense of belonging and camaraderie.”
Team RWB Oswego started in November of 2014 when a team from Watertown came down for the Oswego Veterans’ Run. Inspired, a small group formed and ran throughout that cold winter, collecting members along the way and becoming an official chapter in February 2015.
What started with a handful of members has blossomed into a strong organization with 130 members, 40 of which are veterans.
Beasley explained how impactful the group has been on its members, saying, “Some of our members have reached fitness goals that they never thought possible; some have had experiences that they never would have tried without the support of their team; some have found that sense of purpose, and belonging they were searching for.”
Team RWB Oswego now offers 20 – 30 consistent exercise events, 2-3 social events, and 1-2 community outreach events on a monthly basis. They have volunteered at local events, parades, races and community projects. And last year they hosted the inaugural 9-11 Remembrance Run with all proceeds going back to Team Red, White, and Blue. Look for the event to be held again this year.
For more information about Team RWB visit www.teamrwb.org or contact Beasley at [email protected]
Recognizing Oswego County focuses on the positive efforts that are being made in the community. Each month ROC uses this recognition effort as a platform for emphasizing the wonderful work that is happening in Oswego County to promote the health and wellness of children, families and adults.
A theme is selected each month and nominations for Community Champions are solicited.
For June, Recognizing Oswego County is seeking nominations in the area of Juvenile Offender Rehabilitation. Nominations are due by June 1.
The nomination form is available on the “Recognizing Oswego County-ROC” Facebook page or by contacting [email protected]