Wells Fargo advisor Allen Olender and his colleagues usually spend most of their time planning their clients’ financial futures at Wells Fargo Advisors offices across metro Detroit.
This week, they are taking time to give back to the troops stationed overseas.
But they can't do it alone, and they're asking for your help.
“This is an amazing opportunity to say thank you to our service members," Olender said. "We have it so easy here, and we often take it for granted.”
Olender is inviting anybody who wants to sign a card for the troops to visit certain Emagine theaters and Wells Fargo Advisor offices this Thursday as part of the first-ever "1,000 cards for 1,000 troops" event. Homemade cards will also be accepted.
Olender and his associates are hoping to send the cards to troops serving overseas in time for the spring holidays. He said Wells Fargo employees often send cards to the troops, sometimes on a monthly basis.
"We send out holiday-specific cards for the troops every year," Olender said, adding that this year is the first time they've expanded the program with "aggressive effort."
The cards will be available for all to sign at the Wells Fargo Advisors offices in Northville as well as those in Ann Arbor, Birmingham, Clinton Township, Farmington Hills, Grosse Pointe Woods and Troy from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. You can also sign a card at the Emagine Theater locations in Novi, Rochester Hills, Royal Oak and Woodhaven from 6-9 p.m.
The cards will likely be mailed over this weekend to troops serving in Afghanistan and those supporting United States Africa Command (AFRICOM).
"We will also be sending to at least two bases in Germany ... and probably another half a dozen countries," Olender said. "There will be cards going to a number of aircraft carriers, too."
Olender said he was inspired to start giving back to the troops after stopping to admire a Korean War monument while on vacation in Traverse City.
"On the headstone, it says, 'Freedom is not free,' and every time I see those service members out defending us, I think, they're kids. Could be my kids. They have parents just like me that are worried about them. The least we can do is say thank you and we're thinking of you and we're proud."
Olender also thanks his Wells Fargo Advisors colleagues for their effort, adding that Wells Fargo itself has been instrumental in keeping the program going.
"Giving back is a big part of Wells Fargo culture," he said. "It's the right thing to do."
Individuals or organizations interested in supporting the effort may contact Allen Olender at firstname.lastname@example.org or 248-737-8459.
Where to sign a card
- Wells Fargo Advisors, Northville (22260 Haggerty Road Corporate Center II, Suite 230, 248-380-0331), 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
- Wells Fargo Advisors, Ann Arbor (2723 South State Street, Suite 320, 734-668-4300), 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
- Wells Fargo Advisors, Birmingham (255 E. Brown St., Suite 400, 248-433-8527), 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
- Wells Fargo Advisors, Clinton Township (43630 Hayes Road, Suite 200, 313-642-6112), 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
- Wells Fargo Advisors, Grosse Pointe Woods (19770 Mack Ave., 313-642-6112), 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
- Wells Fargo Advisors, Farmington Hills (31440 Northwestern Highway, 248-737-8868), 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
- Wells Fargo Advisors, Troy (2401 W. Big Beaver Road, Suite 600, 248-649-9944), 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
- Emagine Novi (4425 West 12 Mile Rd.), 6-9 p.m.
- Emagine Rochester Hills (200 Barclay Circle), 6-9 p.m.
- Emagine Royal Oak (200 N. Main St.), 6-9 p.m.
- Emagine Woodhaven (21720 Allen Road), 6-9 p.m.