It was just a matter of money and paperwork to get my idea legalized. The next step was figuring out how to raise money. Much like Noah in the desert trying to convince people that a flood was coming, I set out to share my idea. It was as big as an elephant. But the way you eat one, is one bite at a time. Some of my buddies chipped in and we created a logo and a catch phrase, “Never Alone, Always Together”. That was the message we hoped to convey. Again my buddies put together some random art and created a powerful visual effect representative of all branches of the military and implying that there is strength in numbers.
My buddies approached a T-Shirt company called “Nine Lines” with the notion of BuddyWatch. We pooled some money together to order our first batch of T-Shirts. We thought they would sell like hot cakes. They sold, but more like a seasonal clearance item. Then we ordered sweatshirts and hats so we could broaden the appeal. We have items to sell on this web page as a result of that. We have other ideas, but at this point, we don’t want to invest any money in that direction.
How to get the word out. How to explain what we are about. How to convince interested investors that we would not be taking extravagant trips on their hard-earned money. This was the next dilemma. All you have is your word. Word without action means nothing, right? We walked the walk.
We set up a board, by-laws and a bank account. We set up a booth at area events. We participated in parades proudly displaying out banner and created a Facebook page. We told everyone, we met about BuddyWatch, Inc. Sometimes we told them multiple times. We put together a speech and a donation jar and we talked to anyone willing to listen..
Along the way, we met like-minded people. Everyone encouraged us to keep doing what we were doing. One of our first was a lady named Jami who owns The Savannah Stage Company. She was my son’s friend. She linked us to the Service Brewing Company in Savannah, Georgia. It is a Veteran-owned brewery in Savannah, GA. Savannah Stage Company was putting on a play to raise money for various Veteran organizations. The play was “The Red Badge of Courage” a war novel written by Stephen Crane. The story of young union soldiers during the Civil War. (It was mandatory reading when I was in high school. On the night before their first battle, the boys gathered around the fire discussing courage and what was to come on the following morning. The things they discussed were the same things discussed among soldiers today. From that play, the name of the community was born. Polaris
That’s Polaris. Some folks call it the North Star. My daddy always said that “If a man ain’t sure where he is, or where he’s goin’, all he had to do is find Polaris and he won’t be lost no more.” Red Badge of Courage