The Strength Behind the Strong website. Proudly supporting our friends and family in the U.S. military, including Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard.


The Strength Behind The Strong was founded by Christine Hofmann-Bourque, who is proud to have a husband in the Army, three brothers in the Navy and Army, and a sister-in-law in the Army. Christine is also a professional journalist. Read our first post to find out why this website is so close to her heart. More >>

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Entries in Charity (3)


Battling TBI and PTSD One Step at a Time: The Boston Red Sox “Run to Home Base” 9K

Congratulations to all the runners who crossed home plate at Boston’s Fenway Park today to finish the 2nd annual Run to Home Base 9K — and helped raise more than $2 million to treat soldiers who have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan with post-traumatic stress (PTS) or traumatic brain injury (TBI). My husband, Kyle, ran this year, and the event was as inspirational as it was last year when I ran (ahem, ran/walked). Sitting in the stands with so many supporters of our military was terrific. Many people wore T-shirts in remembrance of those who are now serving and those who have fallen. My favorite shirt had a yellow ribbon and said Until they come home ... and after. 

And they're off! More than 2,000 runners finished the Run to Home Base 9K, which starts and finishes at Boston's Fenway Park.

One young soldier who suffered a TBI told the crowd the Home Base Program helped him get his life back. I can’t think of a better endorsement of a program than that.

Kyle's finishing time today was a super-fast 39:40.

Learn more about the Home Base Program — and get help if you need it — at To find out how to participate in next years run, visit See you next May at Fenway!


Got a minute? Give (calling card) minutes by supporting Cell Phones for SoldiersCel

You know that old, no-longer-used cell phone that’s not doing anything but hogging up space in your junk drawer? Put it to better use by donating it to Cell Phones for Soldiers. This nonprofit organization recycles old cell phones to raise money to buy phone cards for military men and women serving overseas. Here’s how easy it is to make sure soldiers can call their moms: 

Screenshot of Cellphones for Soldiers banner image.

  1. Package old cell phones in a box or envelope for shipping.
  2. Go to the Cell Phones for Soldiers website to download a free postage-paid mailing label
  3. Send the package off using First Class mail from the U.S. Postal Service.

If you’re feeling extra-generous, put the postage on the package yourself. Here’s why: If the charity doesn’t have to pay postage for your package, it can spend that money on phone cards. (You can still use a preprinted label. Simply place your postage over the area that says “No postage necessary if mailed in the United States,” like I did, below.

Padded mailing envelope addressed to Cell Phone for Soldiers with an old flip cell phone lying on top of the envelope.From

Request a free prepaid calling card for your deployed loved one. Cell Phones for Soldiers will mail a prepaid calling card to any servicemember stationed overseas upon request. Simply enter that person’s name and APO/FPO address in the “Request Calling Cards” section of the website. (I just ordered one for my Adopt an MP soldier.)


Red Sox “Run to Home Base”: A 9K to support veterans with PTSD and TBI

June 2010 update: A big “thank you” to everyone who helped us raise $1,410 for the Home Base Program.  

You don’t have to be a Red Sox fan to root, root, root for Boston this Sunday, May 23. That’s when the charitable Red Sox Foundation is hosting a Run to Home Base 9K to benefit the new Home Base Program. This critical program supports soldiers who have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Screnshot of the front page of the Red Sox Home Base website.Let's race! This Sunday's Run to Home Base 9K finishes at Fenway Park, home to the Boston Red Sox. It's a fundraiser for the new Home Base Program, which supports veterans with PTSD and TBI — and their families.

If you have a loved one who is suffering with PTSD or TBI, you know that these invisible wounds affect not only the serviceman or servicewoman, but also their families and friends. That is why more than 2,000 runners (including me) raised a minimum of $1,000 each for the Home Base Program. To learn more — and to get help if you need it — head over to the Home Base Program website. For details about the run (or walk/jog, in my case), check out my Run to Home Base webpage. Next up on my race-preparation list is deciding what message to put on my shirt. Suggestions are welcome!