The VFW Foundation is the official 501(c)(3) charity of the VFW. The VFW Foundation was created in 1996 to provide for support programs and services that secure, manage and distribute resources to improve the lives of veterans, military service personnel, their families and the communities in which they live. Founded in 1899, the VFW is America’s oldest and largest (1.9 VFW and Auxiliary Members) organization of combat veterans. The VFW has been instrumental in the creation of the VA and passage of every major piece of veterans legislation such as the Post 9/11 GI Bill. The organization has also been one of the most vocal and passionate proponents of many other forms of veteran’s relief to include securing VA treatment for sufferers of Agent Orange and Gulf War Syndrome. The VFW continues to fight on behalf of veterans through advocacy and by offering programs that are entirely free of charge to current and former service members. Since 2004 the VFW Foundation has aided in the distribution of over $2.5 Million to 3,773 financially strained troops, transitioning vets and their families through our Unmet Needs program. Our 1,664 NVS reps located across the country have counseled more than 284,000 troops and veterans over the last three years alone and helped them recover over $6.9 billion in compensation.
We offer several worthwhile and unique programs that support current and former service personnel (100% free of charge with no affiliation to the VFW required). This outreach includes emergency financial aid to troops and their families, scholarships for veterans, Veterans Affairs (VA) claims counseling for disabled veterans, employment assistance and so much more.
Each of our programs has produced excellent results. For instance, our 1,664 National Veterans Service (NVS) officers located in every state, have helped more than 284,000 veterans recover an astounding $6.9 billion in disability awards over the last three years. Through our Unmet Needs program we have distributed $5.3 million in grants to 3,773 needy military families for help with rent, mortgage, vehicle repair, utility payments and groceries.
Our Help a Hero Scholarship program created only a year ago, has already dispersed over $1 million to 292 student veterans. While troops and veterans are our focus, we are also proud to engage the communities around our local Posts. That is why we offer competitive essay contests, Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen, to US high school and middle school students, awarding winners at various levels a total of $3.4 million annually.
Not only do we effectively manage results driven programs, we do so with extremely low administrative costs. Charity Navigator, Guidestar, Better Business Bureau, have all ranked the VFW Foundation among the best in the country.