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2017 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Work Vessels For Vets Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Centers to Support the Independence of Specific Populations, Human Services

Mission: Work Vessels for Veterans, Inc. equips America's returning veterans with donations of vessels, tools, or vehicles to start a business or pursue career education.

Results: Since 2008, over 1600 veterans across America have received "vessels" for self employment valued at nearly $2 million! WVFV is the conduit nonprofit through which a corporation or individual may donate equipment to qualified veteran-entrepreneurs.

Target demographics: returning veteran entrepreneurs with the equipment they need

Direct beneficiaries per year: In the last 12 months, WVFV has given away 7 tractors, 4 adaptive farming ATVs, over $30,000 in value of new tool sets, including aviation mechanics tools, 2 greenhouses, thousands of dollars worth of farm equipment, a car for a driving school for paralyzed drivers, a 24 foot moving van, a refrigerator truck to haul organic farm products to market, a river raft to take vets with PTSD out flyfishing, and so much more.

Geographic areas served: all of America

Programs: donations of the equipment they need to start a new business or pursue career education. One of our first veteran enterprises reports to us that he has hired 40 veterans and 8 family members of veterans in his business that has expanded to two states! Your donations make a difference!

Community Stories

74 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

WVFV worked tirelessly to help us find a vehicle to use in our Driving Rehab (Adaptive Driving Services) Start up business.

They were able to collaborate with a local dealer and we were presented with a Chevy Impala, that we immediately sent to Florida to install a state of the art Digital Accelerator Ring. We also installed a left foot accelerator. We have trained well over 30 clients using that vehicle and we can't be more pleased with the efforts of this non profit!

Mark R.1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Work Vessels for Vets changed my life, inspired me to work hard and accomplish my goals. They are so amazing and the things they accomplish and give back to us Vets that are Trying to be entrepreneurs and help others, there are no words to describe my appreciation. God bless them all!!!

Client Served

Rating: 5

When we started our chicken egg farm, the list of equipment we needed seemed endless. I looked for programs that help equip veterans and found WVFV. They set us up with a refrigeration system and helped us get to the next level. We were able to have a few hundred dozen ready to go while we hustled for accounts. Then a few months later we hit a snag with a dishonest chicken dealer. He took a large deposit on some chicken and an egg washing machine then never delivered.nstopped answering his phone too. WVFV stepped in again with an emergency grant for some chickens to help keep us on our production timeline and able to service the accounts we worked so hard to get. Work Vessels for Veterans is a nonprofit hat has had a big impact on our new mission to feed people. I can't thank them enough.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Work Vessels for Vets Inc. recently assisted our local VFW Post to provide a car for a decorated vet who had zero assets and no means of transportation. He desperately needed a car to continue his work of providing in home care to other vets in the area.
WVforV stepped into the breech immediately and provided material help to make a solution possible.
The vet got his car, he continues his work today and the world is a better place, thanks to the help our Post received from Work Vessels for Vets.
Jack Fiedler
Veterans Service Officer
CT VFW Post 1467

Client Served

Rating: 5

Work Vessels for Veterans came through for our business in an enormous way. They made the process of receiving a vehicle seamless in a "too good to be true" fashion. They went completely above and beyond in addition to following up with us and our progress with moving forward. Being awarded a vehicle by Work Vessels for Veterans changed the direction of our business and has brought us numerous new opportunities.

Thanks for all that you do.
Davina Ismail - DribbleBabies

Volunteer

Rating: 5

MCCD have been working with Work Vessels for Vets for several years, reviewing applications and business plans from vets. They are an exceptional organization that efficiently directs nearly 100% of funds to vets across the county, as overhead is minimal.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Work Vessels For Vets was instrumental in helping my husband getting back on his feet again.
A great non-profit that truly helps Veterans in need!

Adrienne K.1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Thank you Work Vessels for Vets for helping my family when no one else could!

Client Served

Rating: 5

What an amazing organization! Not only did they assist me with obtain two key pieces of equipment for a start up business, they also placed me in contact with an outstanding mentor. I've since recommended Work Vessels for Vets to several friends and colleagues.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Work Vessels For Vets helped me with purchasing corral fence panels for sorting/loading my longhorn cattle. Our small farm operation, Victory Garden Homestead, was in need of these to safely handle our cattle and Work Vessels For Vets helped us greatly in our time of need!
Thanks again Work Vessels For Vets!

Jeff (Victory Garden Homestead)

Board Member

Rating: 5

Work Vessels For Vets was instrumental in helping our organization, Veterans Equine Therapeutic Services, continue to be able to provide services to veterans free of charge. They generously provided a laptop computer, printer and funding that allowed members to attend classes vital to our program. We are very appreciative of their efforts in supporting us!

Donor

Rating: 5

WVFV is a truly remarkable organization. I was at a fund raiser for WVFV with a friend and thought that an organization I was associated with could help. I brought the idea to my fellow members and they were very excited about the opportunity to work with WVFV. We have been associated with them for three years and it is amazing the opportunities they bring to Veterans. Any one who gets involved with WVFV will be very pleased.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Great orginazation to work with and very supportive of our fundraiser for WVFV

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1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This nonprofit gave me assistance when no one else was able.

In 2006 I was seriously wounded when deployed to Iraq during my 10th year as a Military Police officer. My right leg was severed above the knee and I was left with 3rd degree burns, PTSD, and a traumatic brain injury that manifested as a Parkinson’s-like movement disorder. Devastatingly, I couldn’t use my hands to feed myself or write. This caused me to spiral into depression, the likes of which I had never known. I felt less than human; not even good enough to go to the grocery store. The meanings to the words uselessness, self-hatred and even suicide were now in my vernacular.

Then my therapist suggested I try a hobby that used my fine motor skills, so I decided to try jewelry. In the beginning, things were VERY slow, repetitive and frustrating. Over time, I realized my hands were actually getting better, and one day, I became aware that my hands were almost "Normal”. This spurred me on, and I continued to learn everything I could about the technical craft of making fine jewelry, and eventually I found my niche: because I know what it’s like to not feel pretty, my mission is to help women know how beautiful they are via use of my jewelry. I started a business and began fulfilling my destiny in October of 2010.

I soon found insurmountable obstacles, the first of which was financial. My business was mainly funded by my disability income, which also was used to pay my mortgage, my car and other bills. This stretched me very thin, and some months I wasn’t able to pay everything. Especially when my business progressed to the point where I needed expensive tools, like a PUK welder. I first became aware of this technology in late 2013, when I witnessed a friend tell her customer she would fix a gemstone-laden broken ring as she was waking back to her bench, and she came out to the front 5 minutes later with a ring that looked like new. In my world of jewelry, I would have to first remove the gemstones, then make the repair, then re-set the stones - hoping I wouldn’t damage the ring in the process. When questioned, my friend informed me this was due to a process that used electricity instead of heat to join the metal. Further research revealed this piece of equipment was around $4000, much too expensive for my rigid budget. Throughout 2014, I tried on multiple occasions to contact service organizations that I thought would help. I repeatedly heard phrases like ”…that’s not within the scope of our mission..” or, ”...much too expensive for our budget…” or even, ”…how do you expect us to help other veterans if we gave you such a sizable portion?”.

Then one day I got a email from Google Alerts I had previously set up for the words "veteran's grant”, and I read about Work Vessels For Vets getting a $70,000 grant from the Newman’s Own Foundation. I immediately contacted them. Fast-forward an edited business plan and a year later, and my very heavy welder was sitting in my lap. Moved to tears, I called Cathy Cook, the Executive Director of Work Vessels For Vets and explained to her how much this gift means to me. I realized 6 months later, that my productivity improved roughly 30% and my turnover of broken gemstones decreased by around 70% year-over-year. When I say this no-profit is doing good things to help veteran’s entrepreneurial efforts, I mean it. No other organization would even consider giving me a $4000 grant, but Work Vessels For Vets was able to because 95% of all donations go directly to veteran services (which I have learned over time is extraordinary).

Tara Hutchinson

Read more of my story and see my work at www.tarahutchjewelry.com

James W.1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I wasn’t able to find employment in Connecticut for 3 years and always had a dream of running my own company. In June 2017, I finished my college degree and I started my company, Wright Service Group LLC, with some very basic hand tools. I immediately received calls for service and regrettably had to turn away some great opportunities due to a lack of specialty tools.

As any tradesman knows, not having the right tools for a job can cost you your business.

I wrote to http://www.workvesselsforveterans.org/ who came through in a big way and gave me a huge hand up in July 2017. They provided me with much-needed tools that surpassed the basic carpentry hand tools I had, allowing me to compete for work.

I don’t know how to thank this amazing, “small but mighty”, group of people for coming to my aid, but I will always remember their kindness. I hope in the future I will be able to step-up as Work vessels for Veteran's did, to help other disabled war veteran’s start their own companies.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Hello all
When I got out of the Army in 2015, I had no plan at all to what I was going to do. So about 9 months later I decided to go back to school. My plan was to go to school and get my Carpentry Diploma and start working from home, but I had no idea of how I would buy the tools I needed to start this idea. I heard about Work Vessels for Vets by word of mouth. I decided to give them a try and see what happens. About a month later I had all kinds of tools (NEW Still in the box) in my hands ready to go to work. The work I do from my home I have not made anything for money yet, the work I do, I do to help manage PTSD I have.
When I started school I needed a computer and I did not have any money for that. Again I contacted Work Vessels for Vets and they sent me a refurbished computer to do my school work on, it took about 2 weeks.
Thank You WVFV, none of this would have been possible if it wasn't for yall.
God Bless the men and women who work at WVFV that wants to take the time out of every day to take care of us Vets.
Thank You
Alan Allison

NoSurrenderProductions

Client Served

Rating: 5

Work Vessels for Vets has been great. I first heard of them when my friend was starting a charity to take disabled veterans fishing. We received a BOAT that we refurbished and outfitted to be handicap accessible. That was amazing, then they reached out to me persoanally to help me with my video production business. They purchased me some gear I needed. They have even offered to assist me further as my business grows. Great program, worthy of your support!

Client Served

Rating: 5

This organization helped with materials for my degree in marine biology I am a Purple Heart oif veteran and This is truly a organization that really helps veterans

Tim_89

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

phenomenal. They help veterans in need of laptops.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

It's great true non-profit, helping our veterans in many different ways and saving lives. I am proud to be a part and supporter of this organization.

Previous Stories
1

Donor

Rating: 5

Been a supporter of this charity for years and continue to see it change veterans lives because of the heartfelt work behind it. I will continue to support and watch this amazing charity grow, simply by kind people helping others.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

WVFV is simply the greatest Veteran nonprofit there is. No other organization has the heart and determination to help our Veterans succeed. Thank you for all that you do!