FALLBROOK – If local residents or businesses need someone to help hang Christmas lights, serve hors d’oeuvres at their open house or valet park cars for their holiday party or special event, they can hire a Marine or member of the U.S. Navy to do it.
Five years ago, Mark and Tori Baird discovered that Camp Pendleton military personnel were more than willing to work day labor jobs to put food on the table, fix a dented fender or buy a child’s birthday gift. All that was needed was a way to put them in touch with local residents needing occasional help.
These young men and women in uniform do not make a lot of money, so the Baird’s designed a Web-based program to connect homeowners and business people with military folks in the area who are more than willing to work. That’s how Hire-a-Patriot, a non-profit organization, got started.
The program has been successful beyond belief. Thousands of day jobs have been offered and taken.
Once in contact with one of these young people, it is possible to negotiate the terms of the job. The average rate seems to be in the $10 to 12 per hour rate with lunch usually included and sometimes even a few bucks for gas.
After the success of this initial program, the Bairds discovered that the divorce rate of young military men and women was skyrocketing. One estimate was that 90 percent of the young marriages enduring “multiple combat deployments” were failing, so the Baird’s started a weekend marriage retreat program to hopefully mend a few of those troubled marriages.
Now the Bairds are working to develop and provide some type of outside therapeutic recreation for wounded Marines going through the rehabilitation process. The exact form of this new project hasn’t been finalized, but the Beard’s are finding there is significant community support in Bonsall and Fallbrook. It is hoped that by spring 2010, there will be another successful outreach up and running.
To hire one or more of these fine young men and women, residents can go to http://www.HirePatriots.com. On the site, there’s a button for posting day jobs. One fills out the brief form, posts it, and waits for the phone to begin ringing. It usually does within about five minutes.
Those that aren’t computer savvy can call the Bairds directly at (760) 730-3734 and they’ll assist in posting the job listing.