TRAGEDY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM FOR SURVIVORS

Rating: 4.82 stars   73 reviews

Issues: Mental Health, Veterans

Location: 3033 Wilson Blvd Suite 630 Arlington VA 22201 USA

Mission: TAPS is a national nonprofit organization offering comfort and care to anyone affected by the death of someone who served in the Armed Forced. We offer peer-based emotional support, crisis response and intervention, grief and trauma, casework assistance, long-term survivor wellness, and community and military education and outreach.
Results: Each year, TAPS hosts and participates in events across the country to provide support to all who are grieving the loss of a loved one who has died while in military service. Through our national and regional seminars and good grief camps, retreats, special presentations and fundraising events, TAPS is able to provide hope and healing. Our special presentations offer survivors, caregivers, military personnel, supporters and friends the opportunity to learn more about military grief and learn about the mission of TAPS.
Target demographics: families of fallen military service members heal and rebuild their lives.
Geographic areas served: the United States and around the world
Programs: TAPS is a national non-profit organization made up of, and providing services at no cost to, all those who have suffered the loss of a loved one in the Armed Forces. The heart of TAPS is its national military survivor peer support network, which brings together the families, friends and coworkers of those who are suffering a loss. TAPS, an official Veteran Service Organization, also offers bereavement counseling referral, provides case worker assistance that carries the work of the casualty assistance officers into the future, hosts the nation's only annual National Military Survivor Seminar and Kids Camp, publishes a quarterly journal mailed at no charge to survivors and care givers, maintains a comprehensive website, and offers a toll-free crisis and information line available 24 hours daily through 1-800-959-TAPS. TAPS offers total care and support for the military family experiencing a casualty. Please call on us to help!

2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

Within days after I was notified by the US Navy of my sons death, KIA 9.22.2013; a package from TAPS arrived in the mail. I opened the package and a wealth of information was at my fingertips. From whom to call for assistance during my darkest hours of grief, to support groups, TAPS volunteeers and staff providing me what ever I needed help with;TAPS was there for me 24 hrs a day. I appreciate their calling to check on me to see how I was doing. I deeply thank TAPS for introducing me to other Gold Star Family members who understood what I was going thru. I am on a journey and am so blessed to have TAPS by my side.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Likely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

Hello! First let me start by saying that I'm a widow of a Marine who was not killed in duty but instead by a drunk driver. This happened in 1999. Since then I went back to school to get my Masters in counseling so that I could help other survivors. Currently I am a grief counselor and also the Director of Children's Bereavement Camps for Hospice of the Chesapeake. I've been involved with camp programs for children and adults for 13 years. By chance, I met Bonnie Carroll through a mutual colleague in April and she was so kind to invite me and my son to the National Survivor's Seminar in May. I was so touched because even though it's what I do for a living, I've never been to a bereavement camp or retreat as an attendee nor has my son.

From the moment I arrived I felt welcomed and loved by the entire TAPS staff. No matter how busy they were they made me feel like I was very special and the only one there. I immediately made friends at the seminar with all the other wonderful survivors. I was blown away at the quality of the seminar and the experience of the speakers and seminar leaders. It was far more than I would have ever expected.

When I ran my camp this summer, I took this experience and shared it with my volunteer staff and camp families. I took the "spirit" of TAPS and shared it with my camp program because it felt it was so amazing! And I remember how they made me feel as a newcomer.

In my opinion this is a top notch organization with people filled with passion for what they do. I'm sad that I never found it sooner but I'm so thankful that I found it when I did.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Nothing! I would change nothing!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

TAPS has given me unconditional support. I hope to become a mentor, one day. This is a much needed service for widows and orphaned children of our services members.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Help them grow!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Some

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

I was warmly welcomed into the TAPS family. No one shut me out because my loss was related to the Vietnam conflict. I appreciate that more than words can expess. I think it is extremely important for young children of fallen service members to be supported and encouraged by the country. They should feel their lossed love one is a hero. TAPS is providing an outstanding and supportive vehicle for healing and support. This was missing for so long. I am so thankful for and proud of TAPS! A+ Thank you!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Help it grow!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

On May 19 2014 my fiance committed suicide. He was the love of my life..my world. My everything. .until he got kicked out of the army. He was diagnosed with ptsd and sleep apnea. ..The army chapter him out for being overweight. He felt like such a failure..nothing was the same he seemed he didn't even have a purpose anymore...I tried so hard to comfort him and help him but the depression got worse and worse as the months went on...of course at first he kept saying I'm a soldier I can handle anything so he didn't want help...then he couldn't get a job we lost our house and had to move in with our mom. He then realized he had a problem and tried to get help but it was like a different story each day. No one believed him...He laid on the couch for 4 months with me and our kids tried to pull life together for him try to make it easier...He became so angry inside himself he would have out Burts on me and our children. He stated to lay his hands on me and not remember he was doing it...and again..no one believed him he couldn't remember what he was doing. It was so terrible for us the fighting yelling and physical abuse.. He finally just said f it and he moved two states away to get work..which he did not find. I talked to him when when he was down all the time actually when he moved. .I loved him so much it hurts sometimes I can't even breathe when I think about him.... so needless to say may 19th marked his one year out of the army , and he took his life on the same day and time he singed out...I don't understand this I just don't. I feel like I didn't fight hard enough for him or didn't show him how much I loved him. I just wanted to share this because I pray each and every day for our vets. And I am raising ptsd and suicide awareness where where live..I wish I knew and understood ptsd before I'm probably a year late but I pray I can help others some how some way... rip. Specialist Staton. So anyways I am writing this review because if it was not for TAPS. I didn't think I could move on after losing Adam. They helped me get involved in counseling and seminars and group therapy
.they have called me and made me feel loved and touched my heart In so many ways to even count. TAPS IS amazing and truly deserves this. Every time I hear about TAPS I get excited and every phone call and email I received from them left me with a small piece of warmth in my heart again. Thank you TAPS you saved my life and my children.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Not they are awesome

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

In November 2009, I lost my brother to suicide, it's been one heck of a long ride to come to the point that i understand that i am not the only one going thru this. When our Castilty officer contacted my mom saying that there was a group that is helping families deal with great losses, we insteally found out more information. My first TAPS event was in October 2010- with not knowing what I was getting myself into, i connected with so many people who knew just what I was going thru and I also knew that I wasn't the only one dealing with this. TAPS has been so amazing over years that, now it's my turn that I give back to them. Not only by writing this review but letting others know that there are people out in the World that are going thru the same thing. Thank you TAPS for everything!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would change on how many days that they hold seminers for, instead of 2-3 day seminers, I would make it a whole week. So that we could get to know each other more and listen to each others' stories.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

In November of 2011, my dad was killed in Afghanistan. I felt so lost and no one understood what I was going through. When my mom told us about TAPS and that we were going to the National seminar, I was really nervous. On my first day I met my mentor who would change my life for the better. I started making friends and learning that I was not alone in my situation. I currently went on a TAPS retreat for children of the fallen. I learned so much and feel so blessed for the people I met and the things I got to do. I was able to dig a little deeper into my grief and find some peace. I'm still working on it but I know if I were to run into any troubles, I have my TAPS family to help me out.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

TAPS has changed my life incredibly! My dad was KIA in Afghanistan 2011. I was living in a very small town at the time when my Dad died. My elementary school my brother and I were going to at the time had only 500 kids in the school, and we were the only ones who had lost our dad in the military. I only had my family until we found taps six months after my father was killed. When I got there I was really nervous, but it only took a few minutes at the camp to really feel welcomed! I wasn't the only one anymore! I had people to tell stories about my dad to and remember him without someone feeling uncomfortable about me talking about my dad. I could create bonds with the other kids and even the mentors. Every time I hear about TAPS I get so excited and brag about it! Its like every year it can't come sooner!!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

TAPS has been a lifeline for me and my children. My husband was KIA in Afghanistan 2011 and I was feeling so lost. I called the Taps hotline and immediately was connected with someone I could talk to. Within a few days, I received a care package. AT our 6 month mark, we went to our first Good Grief Camp and Seminar. It was amazing. I met the most incredible, caring, loving and supportive people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. I learned that the way I grieved may not be the way others grieved and it was okay. A couple months later I was able to attend a Widow's retreat. It was the best thing I could have done for myself. It was something I never dreamed I needed until I was there. I don't know where my children and I would be without the love and support TAPS has provided us.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

My son was killed in 2008, while on active duty in the US Army. It was very difficult to deal with the loss and find the help we needed to understand how we would go on without him. TAPS has given my family and many other families a place to get assistance and feel accepted by people who know how you feel. This is a place where we can get help and help others. I can't say enough about Bonnie, all of her wonderful staff and volunteers.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would like to see events in all 50 states.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

Our country owes a great debt to those that serve to keep us safe. None pay a higher price than those family members that have lost a family member in our military services. TAPS is there for those families to lend support and guidance, comfort and care to those family members in their times of grief and help them to move forward. I have had the privilege and honor to work with many of their team members and volunteers when planning their events for their programs. It is always with professionalism and concern that every dollar is accounted for and every penny spent is done to make sure that they are receiving the ultimate experience for each of their family members, while adhering to strict cost constraints to make certain that the programs can continue and the success to the participants. The family members are the top priority and this never waivers. I see the commitment and dedication of their staff and know this isn't just a job for any of them - this is their life, their focus and their passion. Thanks to TAPS for all you do!!!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Make sure they were well funded by government monies so that they need not rely solely on donations.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful?