(Washington D.C., Thursday, April 27, 2017) - Americaâ€™s veterans need Americans to volunteer. This yearâ€™s National Volunteer Week is Sunday, April 23 through Saturday, April 29 and, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, volunteerism is down overall. At the same time, the population and needs of veterans are rising. DAV (Disabled American Veterans), offers a wide range of opportunities for individuals who want to make good on the promise our country gave to our heroes.
DAV helps connect individuals and groups to a wide range of important volunteer opportunities, regardless of their experience or time restrictions. For example, people can volunteer at our nationâ€™s VA hospitals, drive veterans to appointments or provide specialized helpâ€”such as yard work, home repairs or respite careâ€”based on individual needs. As members of the Greatest Generation have dwindled and Baby Boomers are delaying retirement to work longer, the needs for volunteers have never been greater. DAV operates the most prolific volunteer programs serving veterans in the nation and relies on community participation to carry out their important mission.
- Volunteerism is one of the cornerstones of DAVâ€™s mission of empowering veterans to lead high-quality and fulfilled lives.
- DAVâ€™s volunteer programs provide opportunities for communities to directly support their veteran neighbors in a variety of ways.
- Through a small cadre of dedicated volunteer drivers, DAVâ€™s transportation network provided just over 673,000 rides to help veterans access the health care theyâ€™ve earned. This is about 39,000 less than 2015, because of changing demographics among eligible volunteers.
- The benefit of DAVâ€™s Transportation Network goes beyond ensuring that veterans in need are able to get the health care theyâ€™ve earned. Without this program, disabled veterans might otherwise go without lifesaving treatment.
- Youth volunteers are eligible annually for scholarships ranging from $5,000 to $20,000, with $75,000 allocated to top scholars annually. This program, which is supported by the Ford Motor Company Fund, encourages relationships between future leaders and our nationâ€™s heroes.
- The Local Veterans Assistance Program (LVAP) was established to facilitate and recognize initiatives in which volunteers can contribute their skills, talents, professional abilities and time in ways that benefit veterans residing within their local communities. The program empowers individuals to find and develop new and unique ways to support the service and sacrifice of our heroes and their families.
- The Department of Veterans Affairs Voluntary Service Program (VAVS) Program provides a broad array of services to veterans in VA health care facilities throughout our nation. DAV volunteers perform crucial duties as basic as being a buddy to a veteran during days of recovery or therapy, to those requiring highly technical and professional skills. Through the VAVS Program, DAV volunteers provide services to VA medical centers, community living centers and clinics. Volunteers offer meaningful experiences and assist veterans in living healthy and fulfilled lives.
For more information and to learn about volunteer opportunities available in your local community, visit: volunteerforveterans.org.