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Longboat Key Wednesday, Apr. 3, 2019 4 months ago

Operation Kindness continues supporting local veterans

12th annual Operation Kindness Florida Tennis Round Robin and Golf Tournaments, will take place at the Resort at Longboat Key Club on April 16.
by: Katie Johns Community Editor

When Joanne Forch moved to Longboat Key and joined the Resort at Longboat Key Club, she found a lot of charities with which to become involved.

But none were helping veterans, and she comes from a military family and has a brother-in-law who served two tours in Iraq.

So, she founded Operation Kindness Florida Inc., which became a 501c3 public charity in 2014. The organization  donates to nonprofit organizations that support wounded veterans in Florida, such as SRQ Vets, Paws for Patriots at Southeastern Guide Dogs, K9s for Warriors and Building Homes for Heroes.

“No one ever comes home from a war unchanged ... ,” Forch said.

Forch founded Operation Kindness 12 years ago, which is also when she hosted the first Operation Kindness Tennis Tournament. Sixteen players participated the first year and raised a little more than $12,000. Last year, more than $120,000 was raised.

About three years ago, Forch added a golf tournament.

The event is Operation Kindness’ main fundraising event, Forch said. This year’s event takes place on Tuesday, April 16.

The day will begin with tennis sign-in at 2 p.m. and golf registration at 2:30 p.m. When the tournaments are over at 5 p.m., players are invited to a barbecue starting with a cocktail hour and silent auction. Dinner and the live auction will be at 6 p.m.

Registration for the event closes on Thursday, April 11. The entry fee for the tournament and dinner is $100, and guests can attend the dinner for $50. To register online, visit For registration questions, call Gabe Rosica at 440-759-3907 or email him at [email protected].

I’m Katie. I’m the Longboat Observer community editor, which means I cover all people, places and things pertaining to Longboat Key. I graduated from the University of Missouri in 2016 with degrees in journalism and Spanish. Reach me at 941-366-3468 ext. 364.

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