Defense Gives Back: Tuesday’s Children Project Common Bond

Peacekeeping training session during Project Common Bond this summer

This June, Teledyne FLIR Defense continued its support of Tuesday’s Children by sponsoring the Summer Common Bond event at the Bryn Mawr College campus outside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Like the Winter event we supported early this year, Project Common Bond gathered children from around the world who have all suffered the loss of an immediate family member from war, terrorism, or other acts of mass violence.

On the beautiful 140-year-old campus with its intricate carved stonework and sprawling green lawns, Tuesday’s Children hosted its largest event ever, with 60 participants flying in from all over the world. Countries represented included New Zealand, Belgium, Uganda, Pakistan, Ireland, and Lebanon. In addition, 13 kids from US Military Gold Star Families were able to attend thanks to a travel sponsorship from Teledyne FLIR Defense.

For this event, FLIR Defense employees from around the world added a special level of support by signing encouragement cards for participants. Card-signing events were held prior to the event on-site at FLIR offices, and the outpouring of cheer was an incredible example of how Defense embodies our mission to save lives and livelihoods. Over 60 cards were collected and distributed to participants at the Project Common Bond Banquet, ensuring that all the kids received one. Thanks to everyone who came out to sign, and all of our Site Leads and Admins for leading the local efforts!

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Cards collected and distributed to attendees from global FLIR Defense sites

Dan Morgan, Senior Director of Operational Excellence and Tabitha Blankenbiller, Communications Specialist visited the event on-site to speak to visiting media and documentary filmmakers about the project and its shared values with Teledyne FLIR Defense. During the visit they were able to sit in on several of the participant activities, including peacebuilding, art, and music. All of the programs have been designed by Tuesday’s Children after the organization’s formation in the immediate aftermath of 9/11 to provide kids with alternative outlets of grief expression, and empower them to become peacebuilding leaders for their generation.

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The photo scavenger hunt included a Teledyne FLIR hat selfie challenge

“Teledyne FLIR is honored to partner and support Tuesday’s Children’s Project Common Bond that brings children from US military Gold Star families and other children from around the world, such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, Norway, and other countries to build stronger bonds and communities,” said Morgan. “Teledyne FLIR’s mission to provide technology to save lives and protect communities is a perfect match to supporting Tuesday’s Children mission.”

Although the time was brief during the full week of Project Common Bond, it was impossible to leave without a profound level of appreciation for what the organization is doing for the children of heroes, as well as the bonding and care that the children themselves show for one another. Watching a dozen countries rally around a football, or learn a new song in unison was inspiring, as well as catching the small ways that participants looked out for each other, making sure that everyone was included, engaged, and taken care of.

Click here to learn more about Tuesday's Children

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