Celebrities and Athletes Answer a Push-Up Challenge to Support Separating Veterans

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Wally the Green Monster, mascot of the Boston Red Sox, does 20 pushups for veterans. (GiveThem20 via Instagram)

One of America’s most dedicated veteran mentorship companies issued a challenge to Americans nationwide. In recognition of the 20 years of service given by U.S. military veterans since the 9/11 attacks, American Corporate Partners (ACP) is asking people to show themselves doing 20 push-ups in support of veterans leaving the military.

Using the hashtag #GiveThem20, Americans from all corners of the country are answering the call. Former New York Yankees outfielder Hideki Matsui, WWE superstar Eva Marie, employees of Southwest Airlines and the Notre Dame cheerleading squad all have done 20 push-ups for veterans.

In 2015, ACP ran a similar campaign that featured celebrities like John Oliver, Stephen Colbert and Marine Corps veteran and comedian Rob Riggle joining the New York Mets, the Washington Nationals and many others to answer the push-up challenge. The 2021 challenge also will raise $200,000 for ACP to help post-9/11 veterans with their civilian careers.

Anyone interested in supporting the cause can post their #GiveThem20 video using the hashtag. Anyone who wants to help raise money by forming a push-up group as part of a community or team fundraiser can join on the website. So far, the University of Notre Dame, the City of New York and the U.S. Army groups have given the most push-ups.

ACP is a nonprofit organization that provides career counseling to transitioning post-9/11 military members and active-duty military spouses through yearlong, one-on-one mentorships with well-placed corporate executives from one of its corporate partners, many from Fortune 500 companies.

Every year, 200,000 veterans leave the military for new civilian lives. ACP estimates that 5 million individuals have served in the military since Sept. 11, 2001, and launched the campaign to show appreciation and raise money for the cause while keeping up the work of helping those veterans find jobs, start careers and successfully begin new lives.

The nonprofit organization believes the biggest issue facing veterans isn’t unemployment; it’s underemployment. Underemployment is the lack of a meaningful, challenging career that can provide veterans with a sense of purpose and fulfillment along the lines of what they felt serving in the military.

Whether a veteran actively is searching for a new career or is newly employed and looking for advice about how to be successful in their role and advance their career, ACP mentors will customize a program designed to help them along on their path toward rewarding, meaningful, long-term employment.

To learn more about ACP’s #GiveThem20 campaign, visit the Give Them 20 website. You also can check out who’s doing 20 push-ups for veterans by plugging the hashtag #GiveThem20 into your favorite social media search engine.

You can learn more about American Corporate Partners or apply for an ACP mentorship through the ACP website, acp-usa.org.

-- Blake Stilwell can be reached at blake.stilwell@military.com. He can also be found on Twitter @blakestilwell or on Facebook.

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