Travels with the First Lady: Joining Forces Anniversary

Uploaded by whitehouse on 19.04.2012

(plane passing)
♪♪ (music playing) ♪♪
Narrator: Welcome on board with the First Lady of the United States,
Michelle Obama.
The First Lady hit the road to mark the one year anniversary of
Joining Forces, the nationwide initiative that she started with
Second Lady and military mom, Dr. Jill Biden.
During the trip, the First Lady and Dr. Biden highlighted the
progress the Joining Forces initiative had made in
mobilizing communities to come together to provide employment,
education, health and wellness opportunities to veterans and
military families.
The First Lady honored the Joining Forces community
challenge winners, announced a new partnership to train
3 million nurses, stopped by the Colbert Report,
celebrated the Joining Forces 50,000th hire,
and was joined by Ellen Degeneres at an event honoring
and recognizing the high school children of service members.
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On Wednesday, April 11th, the First Lady and Dr. Biden kicked
off the Joining Forces anniversary tour on the South
Lawn of the White House.
Joined by members of the Air National Guard military band
Sidewinder, they honored the Joining Forces community
challenge winners, individuals who were being recognized for
the commitments and support they had generated for military
families in their local communities.
Dr. Jill Biden: Since we launched Joining Forces a year ago,
we have been so inspired by the many ways Americans all across
the country are honoring, celebrating,
and supporting our military families.
Our partners in this effort are businesses, schools, churches,
communities and individuals.
The Joining Forces community challenge finalists are shining
examples of what we've seen.
Narrator: Later, the First Lady and Dr. Biden traveled to the
nursing school of the University of Pennsylvania,
joining service members, military families,
nurses and nursing students to announce a partnership with 150
nursing organizations and 500 nursing schools that will train
and educate 3 million nurses on health issues,
impacting our troops, veterans and their families.
First Lady Michelle Obama: So quite simply, nurses are the front line of America's
health care system.
When Jill and I launched Joining Forces and we first started
thinking about how to improve health care for our veterans and
military families, it was very clear that we needed to call on
all of you, America's nurses and nursing students.
And it is clear from today's announcement that you all have
answered the call in a tremendous way.
Narrator: The First Lady ended the day with a stop in New York City
for an appearance on the Colbert Report,
where she continued the conversation before a live
TV audience to address how far Joining Forces has come and the
sacred obligation we have as Americans to support our
veterans and military families.
Before the show, the First Lady ran into Marine veteran Bryan
Escobedo, who also appeared on the show that night.
Bryan Escobedo: So what I do now, I help veterans get jobs in Texas.
So what you've been doing is very relevant to me,
and it's helped people get jobs.
I want to say thank you for that.
Speaker: Thank you so much.
First Lady Michelle Obama: Thank you for what, you know -- it's what we should be doing.
Bryan Escobedo: Absolutely.
Narrator: On Thursday, April 12th, the First Lady traveled to
Shreveport, Louisiana, stopping in the train yard of the Kansas
City Southern Railway Company, a regional commercial rail line
that has actively hired veterans through the Joining
Forces initiative.
First Lady Michelle Obama: Oh, man of the hour, or one of the men.
It's so good to see you.
Congratulations on your new hire.
And I have a little secret.
Because the truth is is that when we started to plan this
event a couple months ago, we had planned on announcing the
50,000th hire, okay, that's what this was going to be.
But by the end of march, we had already hit that mark,
and then a week later we added 5,000 more.
And by April, another 3,000.
So today, I couldn't be more excited to announce that
America's businesses have hired 60,000
veterans and military spouses in the past year.
America is stepping up in big ways.
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Narrator: Later, the First Lady headed to Jacksonville Naval Air
Station in Jacksonville, Florida,
for the last stop on the Joining Forces anniversary tour.
Here, the First Lady was joined by Ellen Degeneres
at an event to honor and recognize high school children
of service members.
First Lady Michelle Obama: When we talk about how our men and women in uniform sacrifice
so much and serve this country so bravely,
we're not just talking about your parents.
We are talking about all of you.
You all have stayed strong.
I have seen it.
By working so hard at school and at home and doing your part,
you give your parents the peace of mind they need to focus on
their mission.
With your service, you make their service possible.
First Lady Michelle Obama: Fist pump. Okay, it actually goes this way.