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9 Military Charities That Help and Honor Veterans

Here’s how you can give back to those who risked everything for our country

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Soldiers from the 3d U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) help conduct military funeral honors with funeral escort at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia.
Folds of Honor

There is no better way to honor those who have served in the Armed Forces than donating time or money to the charities that help veterans.

These nine military charities are among the very best.

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Getty Images/AARP

You can subscribe here to AARP Veteran Report, a free e-newsletter published every two weeks. If you have feedback or a story idea then please contact us here.

Gary Sinise Foundation

The Gary Sinise Foundation was established by award-winning actor, humanitarian and AARP ambassador Gary Sinise. It has a multitude of programs designed to serve America’s heroes. Through R.I.S.E. (Restoring Independence Supporting Empowerment), the foundation provides smart homes and mobile devices for handicapped veterans.

Its Relief and Resiliency program ensures that veterans, first responders and their families receive support during times of hardship. With the Community and Education program, veterans and civilians are brought together through shared meals, entertainment and workshops. There are many ways to give to this admirable organization.

In Sinise’s own words, “We can never do enough to show gratitude to our nation’s defenders.”

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Special Operations Warrior Foundation

This charity looks to the future, providing educational opportunities to the children of Special Operations personnel who have lost their lives in the line of duty and all Medal of Honor recipients.

This group’s unique approach includes reaching out to each family personally. In addition, when Special Operations personnel are wounded, funds are sent to the family so they can be at the injured member’s bedside. After all, nothing supports a quick recovery better than being with a loved one. To donate to this family-oriented charity, use this form.

Folds of Honor

Founded by Lt. Col. Dan Rooney, this charitable organization provides scholarships to the spouses and children of fallen or disabled military personnel. You can give to Folds of Honor in many ways, including by hosting golf tournaments or honoring the hero in your life at the American Dunes Golf Club in Michigan.

Fisher House Foundation

The last thing hospitalized veterans need to worry about is lodging and transportation for their families. Fisher House builds homes where military and veteran families can stay free of charge while their loved ones are in the hospital. They are located at VA and military medical centers around the world.

The group’s Hero Miles program provides assistance with airfare for military personnel and family members, and its Hotels for Heroes program helps with hotel rooms. While meals are not provided, they’re often donated by volunteers. It’s quick and easy to support Fisher House.

Disabled American Veterans

Finding your way through the multitude of benefits offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs can be a daunting task. That’s where the DAV comes in. Through personal advocates, the group ensures that veterans and their families get the assistance they need with monetary benefits, help with medical transportation and getting work. There are many ways to give or get involved so that those who gave to our country can get back what they deserve.

Blue Star Families

Moving can be stressful for anyone. For military families, which tend to move more than civilian ones, it’s not only stressful but can cause loneliness and insecurities. With this in mind, military spouses founded Blue Star Families.

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Their goal is to connect military families with their neighbors, make them feel at home and bring awareness to the challenges of military family life. As Mr. Rogers said, “Won’t you be my neighbor?”

Green Beret Foundation

This foundation connects our Army’s Special Forces with resources to ensure they prosper and thrive once they’re back in civilian life. Among its programs are Health and Wellness SupportCasualty Support and Family Support.

The Green Beret Foundation Memorial Wall honors those who have fallen in the name of freedom. There are many ways to support the Green Beret Foundation and honor the fine men and women of the Green Berets.

Wounded Warrior Project

The main objective of the Wounded Warrior Project is to support military personnel returning to civilian life by helping them cope with physical disabilities or PTSD. The project provides mental and physical wellness programs, as well as career counseling. Warriors share stories, letting other veterans know they are not alone. Giving to the project helps those who fought bravely for our country live full and happy civilian lives.

K9s for Warriors

A service dog can be a person’s best friend, but it is often much more than that. Service dogs help veterans suffering from PTSD or traumatic brain injuries to live lives of dignity and independence. It’s easy to apply for a service dog and even easier to help unite a struggling warrior with a shelter dog.

If you’re in any doubt, read Army veteran Adam Werner’s testimony on how much his dog Blaze has helped him.

You can subscribe here to AARP Veteran Report, a free e-newsletter published every two weeks. If you have feedback or a story idea then please contact us here.

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