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Help Heal Veterans

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Health, Patient & Family Support

Mission: Help Heal Veterans’, formerly Help Hospitalized Veterans, primary mission is to enrich the lives of veterans and military personnel. Healing arts and crafts provide a therapeutic experience for all veterans including those who are hospitalized, in shelters, in convalescent homes and those undergoing therapy for a wide range of physical and mental challenges. Many veterans experience symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and/or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), which increase the risk for depression, physical injuries, substance abuse and sleep problems. The kits, provided free of charge to the veteran, become a part of the patient’s treatment plan, giving them a creative outlet along with tangible therapeutic and rehabilitation benefits. They improve fine motor skills, cognitive functioning, memory improvement, anger issues and dexterity as well as decrease the severity of PTSD/TBI triggers including anxiety, memories, sadness and frustration. We work to involve the public in meeting this mission through a broad education outreach program, HHV's therapeutic programs provide a meaningful way for individuals, corporations or other nonprofit organizations to help wounded or disabled veterans, military patients and their families rebuild their lives.

Results: For more than 44 years, Help Heal Veterans has cared for America’s heroes, helping them heal. To date, more than 29 million arts and crafts kits have been given, free of charge, to military service members and U.S. veterans, assisting in their recovery from just about every type of injury. From recuperating active duty service members with wartime injuries, to older veterans coping with illnesses that come with aging, Help Heal Veterans has been there with them as they travel the road to recovery. Arts and crafts provide therapeutic and rehabilitative benefits to patients recuperating from injuries such as amputations, shrapnel wounds, paralysis or traumatic brain injuries. Help Heal Veterans' arts and crafts also provide therapy for veterans suffering from memory loss, stroke or extremity weakness. As projects are completed, they instill a sense of accomplishment, improve self‐esteem, and sometimes even demonstrate unrecognized artistic talents.

Target demographics: veteran and active duty military service members

Direct beneficiaries per year: On average 43,811 individual craft kits were distributed each month. Arts and crafts kits were sent to veterans and active duty military recipients in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, American Samoa and Guam. Kits were also sent to veterans and military service members stationed in Germany, South Korea, Indonesia, Canada, and forward to deployed U.S. Navy warships.

Geographic areas served: communities throughout the United States

Programs: Therapeutic materials: see schedule o

veteran assistance and awareness: see schedule o

craft care specialists: see schedule o

Community Stories

72 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am the administrator of a Facebook Group with over 3,000 members who are all veterans from the US Army, USAF, US Navy, US Coast Guards and USMC. Many of these members reached out to the Help Heal Veterans with always positive results. We know that this organization is dedicated to the determent and health of all US Veterans as evidenced by their outstanding respnce of our group members when in need without hesitation. It is gratifying to know that an organization such as this is their to provide unstinting support to those Americans who have served our country with honor.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Such a great organization, especially our local chapter in St. Pete, Florida which serves hundreds of Veterans both at the VA and within the community each month. This program offers Veterans the opportunity to engage in stimulating activities and crafts both in a group setting and within their home. These are craft kits and opportunities that Veterans, otherwise would not be able to afford without the generosity of HHV. As a recreation therapist we rely heavily on HHV kits to provide unique opportunities to Veterans who are new into treatment and exploring their interests. Veterans often don't know where to begin when exploring creative outlets and learn healthy coping skills. As we know, trying different hobbies usually entails spending a lot of money on supplies and teaching yourself how to do it. Most Veterans choose not to because of tight budgets, lack of motivation, or inability to self teach themselves the skill. HHV craft kits takes those barriers away by offering them a wide variety of options, with instructions to assure successs and without spending a lot of money. It opens the door and I've seen many Veterans take their experience with these kits to the next level and really pursue a new found passion in leather work and wood work. We are very grateful for HHV resources, especially the HHV specialist that provide the supplies and education!

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I've been involved in distributing craft kits through the Elks for many years. Kits donated to Veterans are free and we have distributed thousands of them in the past three years. Traveling across the country I have heard nothing but favorable comments about the kits an how they have helped our Veterans.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

As a veteran and a volunteer with Help Heal Veterans, I am so impressed with the therapeutic arts and crafts they provide to veterans. Working with Heather Ritchie and the other volunteers is very rewarding as well as a wonderful experience. I am proud to be a volunteer for HHV!

1 Joe G.6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I truly love having the arts and crafts every wed and thurs at my American legion post 509. I have been doing arts n crafts for many years and I enjoy talking to my fellow vets and helping out in any way I can. And are teacher heather is very helpful in teaching any vet that needs help with a project. She is one of a kind to all us vets here in Fresno ca and we all love her for her dedication.
Yours truly....3rd vice commander Joe Galindo ....US Army

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I currently attend the Help Heal veterans in Clovis, ca. This has been a great program and I see many Veterans such as myself getting great satisfaction from the program. The staff is great and always helpful and the items that are donated are great. I really recommend this program and would like to see it expand more

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Help heal Veterans has been a god send to me. Returning from Iraq, I needed something to keep my mind occupied. That's when I came upon HHV in the VA where I attended a creative therapy class. From then on, I started doing crafts as well as other hobbies.
I am now a volunteer for HHV, and have 7 years under my belt. To be honest HHV has giving me a different side to explore. I work with the Best Craft Care Specialist( Katherine Vanasse).
Thank You.
Dalia Cox ( US Army)

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a Veteran as is my son. My wife is a Craft Care Specialist for Help Heal Veterans. We have all been blessed with what is offered by HHV. The kits have been awesome to put together. I have seen hundreds of Veterans go through the HHV clinic and seen how much this organization means to them. Thank you

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been working with Help Heal Veterans for over 30 years. I say working "with", but actually I mean I have been partnering with HHV to assist them in acquiring supplies at well below market prices and whenever possible free. I love their mission and have spread the word to other businesses. There is an extraordinarily high level of care and effort that goes into each kit they produce. For the people I work with, I know they do not think of their time at HHV as a job but as a calling. I look forward to continuing our long term relationship.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

They supply craft kit to me, as a home bound veteran this really helps with my care. Also one less thing my care provider (wife) has to shop for.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This organization is amazing, I started volunteering with my company Guild mortgage last year . We also helped with colored pencil donations for their kits. Everyone there is so passionate about what they do to help our veterans . They are amazing people and the benefits are huge . I will continue to volunteer and support in anyway I can . Thank you all for what you do and making a difference .

Alan Jones J.

Client Served

Rating: 5

These crafts mean so much to me and help me with my ptsd and depression and just all around moods

awardsr1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

After using the CBC for about 6-7 years in addition to volunteering there, The staff at the Maywood center is the best.

This last year though I have had some very challenging health issues which include a Broken Kneecap, when I go in the staff is always asking about how I am doing and have even called me after surgeries it is refreshing that there are People who still care. Rose, Mia, Dave and Linda always have a warm greeting.
Brothers and Sister Vets Stop in and find something to do with your self there are kits of all kinds from woodworking to leather crafts to models and jewelry, there is something for you there. And if you are unsure of how to there are always the workshops held at least 1-2 or more a month where either a volunteer can help you get it on or else the staff will help you get on the way to complete your own work of art.

Thank you Maywood CBC Staff.

Previous Stories
4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

For almost 5 years I have been going to HHV and it was through them that I learned that I was an artist. Rose and Mia convinced me that I not only built things, I am a woodworker before but that I could use the kits and see more than the simple kit by combining the things and adding my own twist.
I have used the kits as inspiration for many projects that many say are both unique and beautiful, and have won awards at the VA Art Fairs.
I have for 4 years now been a volunteer at both the Berwyn, and the Maywood CBC. and Look forward to going in to help my fellow veterans do many various things as we hold craft workshops every month and I am considered somewhat of the expert on woodworking and Model making.
These sessions bring a sense of accomplishment to me to help veterans some of whom I do not know start or finish or just lend a spare hand or ear to make there day a little brighter.
So if you are looking for a place that makes a difference in the Lives of the veterans community stop looking this is it. And thanks Mia and Rose for showing me that even though I can NOT draw a straight line with a ruler I can be an artist.

I the photos below are of things that I built.
The first is a tribute to the Maywood CBC when we moved from Berwyn, it is a sign-in and photo board that my neighbor who also volunteers and I built of Oak. The clock you see is based upon 1 of the kits available at Help Heal Vets but is completely Handmade of oak and embellished with the seals of the branches of service, it has a Westminster chiming movement. The three soldiers statue is just Painted in many colors and it takes on a life of it"s own. I have completed a few of these for a few Veterans and there are no 2 that the colors look the same just whatever I feel at that minute, I use as many as 8-9 different shades of green to give the uniforms a sense of having been worn in the NAM. The last photo is one of the first true artistic pieces I did I combined 2 different kits that I modified to make what you se an Eagle in a Tray that Hangs on my wall.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

i have been a Craft Care Specialist with HHV for almost five years. I am so grateful for this job and the work that I do. Every day when I go to work I know that the day will offer me an opportunity to help a Veteran who has served our country. Everyday I go to work someone expresseses their gratitude for the therapudic craft kits that they receive. Everyday I hear stories of how these kits help strengthen the Veterans confidence or peace of mind, or just simply makes them feel better. It is a wonderful organization, which serves our Verteran community in a unique way.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a Recreation Therapist at the California Veterans Home. We get at least 2 shipments per year of craft kits from HHV. Our residents really enjoy all of the kits that come to the Home. We have bird houses and bird feeders throughout the facility. We have the healthiest birds in the San Joaquin Valley due to your craft kits. We have several gentleman who wait for us to bring out new stuff so they can be the first ones to get them done. Both male and female veterans really enjoyed making the bracelets were very impressed with the variety and the quality of the supplies available for these projects. Our HHV Rep Heather Ritchie is a favorite person at our facility. They are very upset if she is not in her spot on Tuesdays Mornings so that they can their weekly project to complete. Thank You Very Much for your support of our Veterans and those that make these wonderful craft kits. They are loved and enjoyed by all levels of care here at our facility in Fresno California.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a Vietnam veteran that has been doing Heal Vets arts and crafts for the past 12 years. I enjoy making the craft kits and socializing with other veterans while making the craft kits. The atmosphere is peaceful and the Heal Vet staff and volunteers are pleasant and helpful. I will continue to look forward to attending Arts and Crafts groups, it is very good for my well being and helps with my social skills.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My father spent the spring in a rehab center recovering from a very bad accident. He was offered a leather pouch kit by the staff and was absolutely delighted to have something to do while he was confined to his bed. He ended up making a pouch, a wallet, and a wood clock. I feel like the kits really helped pass the time for him and prevented him from being so bored and depressed. He was so happy to have little gifts to present to visitors to the rehab center. Our whole family feels grateful for the kindness and thoughtfulness that led to someone coming up with such a clever idea to donate craft projects to veterans.

Client Served

Rating: 5

As a Veteran with PTSD, The Arts and Craft kits provide numerous hours of relaxing, creative stimulation. They keep me busy, out of trouble, and are a great grounding technique working with my hands to create. Thank you HHV for you're Service to us Vets!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I cannot thank you enough for this store!! I've been working on these projects for a few years. Very helpful. This non profit is exemplary and helpful. Never met better staff.

Advisor

Rating: 5

Linda served in the Air Force 1978-1992. She was stationed at England Airforce base in Louisiana , Kwang Ju Air station in South Korea, returned to Louisiana. then to West Germany Lindsey Air station and then back to USA, Griffith Airforce Base in New York. Linda Bishop has been living in the Grand Junction since 1992. Linda got her first kit in 1994 while she was at an appointment at the VA Hospital. Linda passed by the craft room and was curious as what was going on. She inquired and selected her first craft kit. Linda has been involved in crafting ever since then. Linda credits her expanded crafting to Help Heal Veterans. She has had the opportunity to put together many of the kits and says it helps her dexterity and keeping her spirits up. She likes to have a craft to look forward putting together. Linda has developed relationships with other Veterans and looks forward to coming into to the store and seeing her peers. Linda states that through HHV she has become more outgoing and has become involved in many community groups.

Previous Stories
3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ernest has been coming to Help Heal Veterans here in Grand Junction since 2006. He reports that he gets distracted from his physical pain by doing the crafts. In 2006 he had sciatic nerve surgery and experiences pain every day. Help Heal Veterans has helped him retrain his brain and keeps him occupied and busy and off the prescription medications. Ernest has been involved in volunteering here at the HHV and recently he has dedicated himself to a permanent shift every week. Ernest has been involved in teaching other Veterans some of the skills needed to complete the leather crafts. Ernest reports that without HHV he would have very little to occupy his time. He looks forward to assisting in clinics at nursing homes and assisted living through our outreach efforts. Ernest is attempting to organize and locate a space to gather with other Veterans to assemble and create the therapeutic craft kits.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am not very skilled at this computer operations, but I would take this moment to inform you how very important these different craft kits are to me personally. I have had over 40 different surgeries over the years and working on these projects help me to deal with the pain as I heal. I started doing leather crafts at the age of nine but due to injuries to my hands and eyes and rheumatoid arthritis, completing leather projects became very difficult. Although I have these difficulties, the projects I receive from this organization have been easy and enjoyable to complete. Friends and family benefit when they get a new wallet, purse, clock; etc.

3

Advisor

Rating: 5

Cindy is a Navy Veteran that served from 1986-1988.She was stationed in Virginia. Cindy enjoys doing the craft kits that Help Heal Veterans provides her. She has been doing crafts kits for the past two years. Cindy has completed several baskets recently. Cindy reports that doing the crafts kit helps her with her eye hand coordination. She enjoys the crafts kits so much and displays all her finished projects in her cabinet at home.

3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

HELP HEAL VETERANS is an amazing organization with awesome staff like Rose in Chicago, who is genuine and passionate about veterans and their wellness! It was an honor to also meet the Board of Directors when they toured Chicago. Each of them were very devoted to the work of Help Heal Veterans and that is significant to veterans that they encounter.

It means a lot to me because all of them were not veterans and as a Vietnam Era Army Veteran, I think it is important to also recognize and salute those who have a caring heart to volunteer their time and resources and who have an understanding of the veterans who need us the most. I also loved doing the purse craft. It allowed me the time I needed to just be still and focus on one thing! It was truly therapeutic and self care for me.

As the President and Founder of the National Women Veterans United (NWVU), we are thankful to Help Heal Veterans for providing the crafts that we offer to the military women veterans who we serve. Most of these women are homeless, at risk or in need of peer support. Our military women veteran members also take advantage of the crafts and even involved our adopted Girl Scout troop to help us. It was great getting the military branch crafts also in which we use for decorations in the Women Veteran's Center. THANK YOU HELP HEAL VETERANS!

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

I'm a veteran. I visit the store in Maywood Il. Manager Rose , Dave and the crew always treat me nice and welcome others with a smile and help us with projects and kits. They are very helpful with know how and service. Thank God their work and kindness. The kits help me to stay focused and relaxed when I'm putting them together. Thank God for Help Heal Veterans organization.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Thank you to everyone who has donated to HHV. Especially thanks to the Maywood Illinois HHV facility employees. They have been a huge help with the therapeutic kits. The therapeutic kits are perfectly named, they provide us with pure therapy while we put them together.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

HHV has made an immense impact on my life. The organization and staff introduced me to the world of crafts when I began to be treated for PTSD and alcohol dependency. Making the crafts they gave me has become a grounding technique for me that I use to help me stay sober and to help manage my PTSD. It helps me detach from emotional pain, cravings, anger, anxiety, sadness, hyper-vigilance, etc. It allows me to focus on the task at hand rather than inward. It's a way for me to get centered. More than a few of my fellow veterans have voiced similar opinions. As soon as I complete this I will begin my next craft! HHV, Thank you very much.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Kind and very caring of our Vets and helpful as possible

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

What a great service....more local advertising could be used....and a wonderful program

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

HHV is excellent job in the area of giving me the opportunity to be social and pursue activities with art, thank you.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Doing great in including all veterans in art activities. Great place to learn, do and visit. Awesome therapy to be able to immerse in classes or get help with your own project. I am so glad someone told me of this place.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

Mr. Cooper is an invaluable part of the recreational therapy that keeps the hands and minds of our 120 veteran residents buzy. He is very patient and our redidents that he serves look forward to his every visit. We are blessed to have the services of Heal Vets. The craft kits they provide are very nice and really help to keep our veterans occupied and entertained. This is a great organization

2

Donor

Rating: 5

A very worthy organization with an extraordinary mission to help our vets through the use of crafts.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Completed a kit with my daughter. Very relaxing therapy turning off the electronics and doing something with my hands - Thank you

2

Donor

Rating: 5

Very helpful and giving organization--provides useful activities veterans can do to promote healing through art therapy.

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I work with residents who served in the military in 1940's so their ability is more limited - HHV kits have been amazing! We can work 1:1 or as a group. Our families are thrilled when they see the beautiful finished products. I am so glad that HHV is there to support our Veterans.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

They have art classes , with a very qualified and caring artist. Art therapy from here is better than any med \uD83D\uDE01

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

For almost 5 years now my office has worked with Help Heal Veterans to co-sponsor Arts & Crafts days for the military affiliated students at Malcolm X College. Rose Schmidt is a wonderful person and very supportive of veterans. Most importantly, she doesn't mind "getting her hands dirty" by showing others how to build some of the craft projects. Representatives from the Student Government Association have expressed interest in working with Rose to allow non-veteran students an opportunity to show their support for veterans.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Their commitment to the Vets is fantastic and Coop the Tampa HHV rep is great in helping our group Sons of AMVETS serve our vets. Class act operation.

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

Thank you for these great free art kits - I love them

4

Donor

Rating: 5

These guys do great work and make a big impact. I've seen how much doing a craft kit can help a vet with severe pain management issues and PTSD. Since they make the kits themselves in a factory in California, they can provide the kits at a much lower costs than if I was to go out and buy it myself at Micheal's or Hobby Lobby.
Also employing Americans in manufacturing jobs. Something that's pretty unique.

I see this group as a good use of my dollar to make an impact on the life of a veteran.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

when I was facing a life threatening surgery at a VA hospital , a volunteer came to my room with a free craft kit to work on ,,, it changed my life forever to know that their were people who really cared!!! They said its medicine that doesn't come in a bottle!!!

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Love what you do for my dad. Your craft kits have changed his life and attitude Thank you

4

Client Served

Rating: 5

I received a package in the mail today and it turned out to be 3 model airplane kits donated by your organization. I wish to say thank you for your generosity in aiding my fight with PTSD.
I do not go out much since I came down with renal carcinoma and these kits help me pass the time doing something other than watch tv.
Again Thank you,
Bill

3

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Great to see a veterans group actually helping veterans - thank you

4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

My father really enjoyed the craft care kits while he was recovering in the hospital. This is the only place that I know of that helps veterans in this way.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 3

I am a veteran and got released from the Veterans Hospital Loma Linda after being admitted for 6 months due to surgery complications. During that time I have tried your kits and found most to be helpful in getting my mobility in my hands, fingers and wrist. It also helped with my coordination and gaining confidence that I can get better. My kit of choice was your leather work. my least favorite was the wood pen craft kit. I found working the bolt press very difficult due to poor design in achieving the right compression and keeping the pen aligned. I made the slim line type pen and the 30cal bolt action. Both were equally difficult in keeping alignment during compression of the parts.
I may suggest that you consult the "International Association of Pen Makers" for design consultation.
Thanks for you help in my recovery.

5

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have helped my dad complete craft kits to help with his PTSD, really helps our family

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

HHV does great work with any veteran who asks for assistance, through art therapy. The issue of PTSD continues to grow in the veteran community and this is one way to handle the triggers and stressors for veterans (without Drugs!)

7

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

A great way to treat PTSD, very grateful for their assistance

10

Volunteer

Rating: 1

I receive money from more charities - approximately $10 a week in checks, cash and coin. From this charity, I receive a $2 bill about once a month - it clearly shows through the envelope. My husband and I each get separately at least a check for $2.50 every other week. I did not believe it was or could be real, but it was and I cashed it and sent the money to a charity I could trust. To date, I have 35 calendars for 2016. none of which I requested, yet the charities send me a follow up asking for payment. We donate quite a bit of money to a number of charities every year - while this is one of the worst, there are so many out there that spend on gifts, no one wants. Not only do we receive calendars, money, labels, gift cards, wrapping paper, labels, blankets, bumper stickers, calculators, date books, pens, notepads, etc. I am so tired of getting "stuff" from charities and have begin to eliminate those charities that can afford to send these gifts from my donation list. I think the charities that take advantage of Americans wanting to support our injured vets is deplorable and they should serve jail time - or better yet - send them to war, instead of all the young men whose lives are taken.



Review from Guidestar

12

Client Served

Rating: 5

We all must understand that even though some of the Board of Directors may have used more than their fair share of money for their selves, the organization Help Hospitalized Veterans, does in fact help veterans in numerous ways! I personally over the many years have seen many veterans receive, work on rehabilitate, help veterans in numerous ways. This organization personally helped me when I was not getting very little help from anyone! They gave me Hope for the future when I had no hope and I thought my life was at it's end! They saved my life in the literal sense and I am ever grateful to Help Hospitalized Veterans and all of the donors out their who made it possible for me! Many of my veteran friends got these craft kits and it has helped all of them in many various ways.
I do find it wrong that the organization got fined $500,000 from the courts. I see the courts as being no better than those who took the money for their personal selves! It makes more sense to fine those involved, but not the actual entity of the Nonprofit organization, which it is not a person and had no control over what those people (Board of Directors) who had to pay a fine! That money $500,000 would have been best used with the organization as the courts and our government took that from those who donated it to go to the veterans NOT THE COURT! All of the board members have been replaced by a new group of board members! This Nonprofit organization was not always like that, as many celebrities have gotten involved with helping to raise money for Help Hospitalized Veterans, some of these celebrities I am sure you probably know, like Bob Hope! Now that the weeds have been pulled out from HHV, I expect that they will continue to help veterans, as I have personally seen them do! Thank you Helped Hospitalized Veterans, you helped me when not many people would help me and I greatly appreciated all of your help!!!!.... Help Hospitalized Veterans always treated me extremely well!

Review from Guidestar

17

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

I am a local pastor that know of HHV and all that they do and all they've been through over the past few months. Even though I am not intimately aware of the details of the lawsuit that was brought by Camilla Harris and the State of California, I do know that all charges were dropped and HHV has been exonerated from all charges.

It is not for me to judge innocence or guilt in this case, but I do know that this organization has done remarkable work in serving our veterans. They have a new team of people that are focused on seeing their mission fulfilled and are looking at new and creative ways to serve our military personnel.

Please do not stop supporting their work with the vets.

9

Donor

Rating: 3

I have been a donor for many years and was just getting ready to send them another check. I noticed the article and started doing some checking. BTW, I have received many cards from those that received kits. They said that the kits helped them very much and, in some cases, also wanted a 'pen pal'. I for one am proud of our vets and want to help as many as I can, especially those that are in hospitals. There are apparently some thieves in this organization, but it doesn't make the entire apple barrel bad. Does anyone know what has happened to those that are guilty and what is being done by the courts?

Review from Guidestar

15 Yvonne Marie M.

Client Served

Rating: 4

I am SGT Melendez, Yvonne M. US ARMY Veteran,this crafts help me deal with my depression and keep my mind busy, I thank with all my heart all the volunteers and donors of this program because it makes some of us veterans who sometimes feel we cant accomplish anything that anything is possible and that we have alot of people that support us. Since I have become disabled emotionally and physically your donations have helped me feel that I can still do things with my hands. Thank you again and GOD BLESS AMERICA AND GOD BLESS YOU ALL.

17

Volunteer

Rating: 1

I am a volunteer at our local VA Hospital and passed out craft kits from HHV. Our patients enjoyed them and they were high quality. THEN! We were informed by management we would no longer be receiving the kits nor would other VA Hospitals as there was fraudulent activity taking place at higher levels. (I have also given to them personally in the past. ) Shame on them! They have hurt the vets who relied on them to help pass the long hours of confinement in hospital. You may be sure I shall never donate to them again, yet I keep receiving solicitations. I just tear them up.

20

Donor

Rating: 1

I originally donated to Help Hospitalized Veterans in 2012 as the program SEEMED like a great idea. I am all for helping our troops. Unfortunately I failed to properly check out their organization before donating. Since my donation, I receive a mailing from them about once every two weeks requesting additional donations and including tons of personalized address labels, stickers, etc. - a complete waste of resources. To make matters even worse, I've actually had them send me real $1 bills to try to guilt me into sending it back along with another donation. I simply take the dollar bill and donate it to another worthwhile legitimate charity. Today I tried to email them from their website to request to be removed from their mailing list. I got some weird auto-response that their inbox is protected by "SpamArrest" and that I would have to go to a verification page to get my email through to them. Research on "SpamArrest" shows that although their service is to supposedly prevent spam, they actually use and sell your address you type into the "verification" page so you get spammed even more. It's incredible how shady these guys at Help Hospitalized Veterans are. No wonder the CA Attorney General is going after them!

Review from CharityNavigator

16 Lynne13

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I just received a check in the mail for $2.50 from this organization, trying to shame us into giving them donations. The red flags immediately went up as why would a charity for veterans (supposedly) be sending out money to the public? I went to CharityNavigator.com to check them out, and sure enough they've been targeted by the state of California for huge excessive salaries siphoned off by the executives....millions, in fact. This organization is a scam and those in charge should have their sorry asses thrown in jail. They should be made to disgore every penny they took, and have the funds sent to legitimate charities for deserving veterans.

Review from CharityNavigator

8

Client Served

Rating: 1

I am a Veteran who was hospitalized several years ago. After I was released from the VA Hospital these kits began to arrive. I did not need them so I used to bring them to the Rehab Dept. at the VA Hospital. The Rehab Dept. now get their own kits from HHV and don't want mine. So, I toss them. Each kit includes post cards to thank the doners. I cannot imagine any of these kits costing more than $5. Yet, in the package I would get 2 or 3 doner cards. I have told HHV that I do not want these craft kits and that I am not in the hospital. Yet, periodically they still arrive. What a waste of donor money.

10

Client Served

Rating: 4

As a veteran and a volunteer for HHV, I can say first hand how helpful the craft kits are to so many veterans. They are used for therpy as well as rehab. To assist a veteran that only has use of one arm make moccasins or one that lost his sight complete a birdhouse or even a vet that had brain cancer making a wallet with his son in the workshop is priceless. I am so saddened and angry that the VA hosp is doing away with this program because of some self-centered and greedy people in this organization, Hospitalized veterans,staff and volunteers will deeply miss the "medicine that doesn't come in a bottle".

8

Donor

Rating: 1

Just received a Christmastime solicitation from HHV. For an outfit that is hurting for funds and facing a CA Atty. General lawsuit, the solicitation is very elaborate: (1) Three pennies attached to a 2-sided, multi-color remittance form; a multi-colored "God Bless America" bumper sticker; (2) first-class, multi-color return envelope (no postage, thankfully), (3) a two-page, multi-fold, 3-color form letter; (4) matte postcard depicting an injured 'vet' (unverifiable photo) holding a model kit; and (5) a Christmas card to sign "for you to sign." I cannot believe that a non-profit would put that much expense into solicitation, especially given their pending litigation. They must be desperate for funds to pay their attorneys!!

Review from CharityNavigator

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

Having never donated or provided my personal contact information to HHV, I was unpleasantly surprised to find an unsolicited donation request in my mailbox. Regardless of whatever work the organization does, such unsolicited donation requests (with pennies inside to deliberately guilt you into a contribution) seem to be a gross misuse of funds and staff time.

3

Donor

Rating: 1

Re: "Help Hospitalized Veterans", I just received a 2nd request for donations so could they still be sending them out(?) I received the 1st 2-3 months ago. The photos on their brochure looked phony... Thanks for the service you are providing.

5

Donor

Rating: 1

i have been a donor to hhv for some time now, in fact, to date i have received 38 completed donor cards with thank yous from vets of all services and locations. in addition, i am a disabled veteran (vietnam 69-70), and have seen the craft kits at the oklahoma city va hospital, and have spoken many times to veterans using these kits over the years. because hhv has been one of my primary charities, i emailed HHV and told them of hearing of the current allegations, and all i received as an answer was the 'canned' legalese reply posted on the HHV web-site.........i EXPECT more of an explanation of whats going on and i EXPECT hhv to be forthright in this explanation. i will NOT donate to this organization until HHV comes clean with whats up......obviously i am very disappointed and upset about this situation,because i know FIRST HAND how much these kits are appreciated by the hospitalized veterans...but i dont like being USED, and their silence has made me feel very MUCH used...... bruce allsen oklahoma city

Review from CharityNavigator

4 Robin43

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I'll have to rate this a One star, as I am appalled to discover the criminality with organzation. In 1980, I nearly died from hemorrhaging pneumonia (ARDS) during Tech School at an Air Force base in Texas. The craft kit I received from this organization was a help to me, and it came with a card saying that it was donated by someone thinking of a hospitalized soldier. At 18 yrs of age, this inspired me to give to veterans charities; so I am grateful for this. Too bad I can't contribute to this charity after learning what we all know now. Just awful.