This November 8th, in honor of Veteran’s Day, members of the Pelican’s Nest Golf Club at Pelican Landing in Bonita Springs hosted their 6th annual golf tournament benefiting Home Base Southwest Florida. The event raised a staggering $256,000 this year through golf registration fees, sponsorships, a raffle, online auction and generous donations. Since 2016, this event at Pelican’s Nest has raised over $512,661 towards the care and support of local SWFL Veterans and Military Families dealing with the invisible wounds, such as post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury.
While the event was reimagined due to COVID-19, a full field of 256 golfers hit the links on a beautiful Monday to celebrate Veterans Day.
Mary Jo Morgan, a member of Pelican’s Nest Golf Club and Committee Chair, is proud to be part of an event that supports those who have served.
After hearing a struggling Veterans tribulation in their post service life, Morgan was inspired to do something. “Many people say ‘Thank you for your service’ but at Pelicans Nest, we put action behind those words. Seeing the impact of our efforts makes it all worthwhile.”
Honorable guests included U.S. Army Brigadier General (ret) Ed Dyer, Home Base SWFL Program Director Armando Hernandez, and Home Base SWFL Assistant Director Jason Cooper.
Karter Elliot, U.S. Marine Veteran and Home Base participant from Southwest Florida reached out to Home Base Program for help.
“I was sick of the emotional roller coaster and the low points,” Elliott says. “…but I think I was finally ready to take the steps to take care of myself, for the betterment of my family.”
It was a breaking point. Elliott turned to the only place he felt comfortable asking for help, fellow veterans.
Once he was ready, Home Base referred Elliott to its Boston location for trauma therapy in 2017 where Elliott received more than 50 hours of intensive clinical care, including group and individual therapy sessions, expressive art therapy, tai chi, yoga, and strength training.
“Our marriage and relationship in general is a thousand times stronger because of Home Base and the tools we were given,” Renee Elliott says.
“I feel hopeful in general. I never have a moment of hopelessness,” Elliott adds. “If we just stop avoiding, this is all very manageable. And you can live a life worth living.”
“I was able to receive this life changing care because of the support and generosity, like this golf tournament, that we can get the help here in Southwest Florida. Thank you for what you are doing for Veterans like me.”
Home Base Southwest Florida is honored to have such dedicated, generous, patriotic supporters like the Pelican’s Nest community.