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Paralyzed Veterans of America

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Health, Military & Veterans Organizations, Mutual & Membership Benefit, Nerve, Muscle & Bone Diseases Research, Veterans

Mission: Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA), a congressionally chartered veterans service organization founded in 1946, has developed a unique expertise on a wide variety of issues involving the special needs of our members? veterans of the armed forces who have experienced spinal cord injury or dysfunction. PVA will use that expertise to be the leading advocate for: - Quality health care for our members, - Research and education addressing spinal cord injury and dysfunction, - Benefits available as a result of our members? military service, - Civil rights and opportunities which maximize the independence of our members and all people with disabilities. For more than 60 years, PVA has fought for our veterans who answered the call when our nation asked for their service . . . and in return, they have given up their freedoms to protect ours. For more information visit www.SupportVeterans.org or www.pva.org.

Programs: Founded in 1946 by veterans of World War II, PVA started out as a small organization - a group of individuals committed to helping each other, sharing their hard-learned strategies for living with spinal cord injury (SCI), and working to improve their communities. Sixty years ago PVA was there to help our paralyzed heroes, and now continues a long legacy of commitment to providing hope for all individuals with disabilities. Beyond our broad scope of SCI research & education, PVA continues to respond to the needs of our members ? veterans of the armed forces with spinal cord injury or dysfunction ? though pro bono legal representation, veterans benefits services, legislation & advocacy, access to quality healthcare, architecture and accessibility, and sports & recreational activities to 21,000 paralyzed members, their families and friends. PVA has awarded more than $40 million in SCI research and education grants, filed hundreds of thousands claims on behalf of our members with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and served millions of individuals with disabilities. And we want to do more in 2006 and beyond. Through the generosity of more than 18 million friends nationwide and a network of 34 Chapters across America, we hope to further educate all individuals to prevent more injuries from occurring, and ultimately to find a cure.

Community Stories

182 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Donor

Rating: 4

As a child born during WWII in Napoli (Italy) suffered of proper medical care.Got ill as manyother children being taken in humid recovers every time the alarm went on when bombers flying around. I was then taken to the American field hospital where I was seen by a doctor.I was then given some medication and vitamins, for my eyes affected by conjunctivitis. I was told by my mother later in the years the ordeal we went trough, and always thinkingof the generosity and gratitude of the American Army.Living now in the USA, I feel is my partto help the PVA.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Another great victory for Veterans! On January 19, 2017, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) issued an interim final rule amending its regulation regarding fertility counseling and treatment available to qualifying veterans and their spouses. Today, services finally became available to veteran.
A young family thanks you!

Previous Stories
3

Donor

Rating: 5

Extremely happy with their mission and programs. I have been donating for nearly 20 years. Great organization with great impact. Great public service announcement.

Review from Guidestar

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1 Craig42

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I had the great honor to serve as a volunteer for the Paralyzed Veterans of America from 1997 - 2007. Over that time I had the occasion to meet Board members, donors and staff. Each and every person was dedicated to the mission of the organization. It was humbling to interact and meet the many men and women who served our nation with pride and who suffer from spinal cord injury and disease.

Review from Guidestar

2

Donor

Rating: 5

For over 16 years my husband and I have contributed to PVA. We are pleased to see our modest gifts used to help ALL veterans. Thank you for your service!

Previous Stories
2

Donor

Rating: 5

For over 15 years my husband and I have contributed to PVA. We are pleased to see our modest gifts used to help ALL veterans. Thank you PVA!

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3

Donor

Rating: 5

There is nothing better than giving back to those who so very much deserve it.

Review from Guidestar

4

Donor

Rating: 5

From 1964 through 1966 I served with the Marine Corps. A little over a year ago, I was diagnosed with ALS. The ALS clinic in Hershey Medical Center, Pennsylvania, recommended that as a veteran I communicate with Paralyzed Veterans of America. I followed the clinic's advice and contacted the Philadelphia office.

The result was extraordinary because I met an extraordinary women, Violet, who serves paralyzed veterans in this region. Within, it seems, days, she had maneuvered my ALS claim through the VA system securing for me all of the benefits associated with this new presumptive service-connected disease.

Since that time, Violet has managed all of my VA administrative details efficiently, yes, but more importantly, with great compassion and concern for my well-being. Recently, I referred to Violet a fellow Marine colleague of mine who was just himself diagnosed with ALS to see if she could get him pointed in the right direction. He lives in North Carolina, and within minutes, Violet had referred him to the Winston-Salem office for assistance.

Thank you to all the Violets who make up the PVA. We veterans are indeed fortunate to have you at our side.

Semper Fidelis,
Phil A.

Review from Guidestar

5

Donor

Rating: 5

I had the chance to see your TV commercial the other day re: James Carville. Great to see another Marine continue his service.

2

Donor

Rating: 5

As a World War II veteran with AlS, I am extremely grateful to Bill, a NSO, for his outstanding help in processing my request for VA benefits. He was efficient, productive and gracious and one of my great pleasures is remaining in touch with him and with PVA. I donate to express my gratitude and give my support to a wonderful organization.

Review from Guidestar

3

Donor

Rating: 5

From one of our donors: "When my husband needed help after he became disabled, PVA's National Service Officer stepped forward and advised us on the steps to take to ensure he got his benefits. We had the best help from people who had experience with the disabled. With all of the charitable organizations, none comes more to the top of the list than PVA."

Previous Stories
8

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Here is Charity Navigator's own letter re: the deficiencies in Charity Navigator's review of non-profits (http://overheadmyth.com/). That's why I go to guidestar.org.
"In 2013, GuideStar, BBB Wise Giving Alliance, and Charity Navigator wrote an open letter to the donors of America in a campaign to end the Overhead Myth—the false conception that financial ratios are the sole indicator of nonprofit performance. For our second letter, released in October 2014, we invite the nonprofits of America to do their part to focus donors’ attention on what really matters: your organization’s efforts to make the world a better place. We ask nonprofits and the social sector at large to join us as we move toward an Overhead Solution."

Review from Guidestar

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3

Donor

Rating: 5

We never realized ALL that they do until we attended on of the Wheel Chair Games. That was the beginning of seeing our donations at work helping our Veterans through research, education, sports and much more. Thank you PVA!

Review from Guidestar

5

Donor

Rating: 5

I feel blessed to have two brothers and a husband who served in the military and made it home alive and unharmed. I want to help the other brave men and women who served our country and were less fortunate. I support PVA for the simple reason that they really help our veterans.

Review from Guidestar

5

Donor

Rating: 3

I always have donated to them, but question, how they can send, greeting cards, calculators, pens, pad of paper and all the other stuff they mail out. This has to be costing them money. St Jude doesn't send anything out. Are they legit?

8

Donor

Rating: 5

I have donated to PVA throughout the years. They have been very faithful to me in promising to take care of our disabled Vets. I'm glad PVA is there. This organization is very near and dear to my heart.

Review from Guidestar

9

Donor

Rating: 5

I’m proud to give what I can to PVA in thanks for all of the help they have given me throughout the years in making sure that my disability claims were properly addressed by the VA. Many of us veterans who were drafted to serve our country years ago had no thought as to the consequences of that service. We proceeded out of love for our country. When the consequences started to emerge, we were stunned, confused, and in shock because no one told us about the downhill spiral that our medical health would be taking. In my eyes PVA has always been there, that one ray of hope or shining light that you see off in the distance and run to embrace because it will help you immensely in getting your health, life and family back on track. Of all the veteran service organizations out there, PVA is by far the best and most sincere organization in regards to the veteran.

Review from Guidestar

16

Donor

Rating: 5

We have been proud donors to Paralyzed Veterans of America since 2005. The impact of its programs and services (veterans benefits, spinal cord injury education programs, wheelchair sports) has had a profound impact on our son's ability to experience his community and has made life easier for our entire family. We continue to believe that the cutting edge research sponsored by PVA will yield medical treatments that will help our son and others affected by paralysis.

Review from Guidestar

13

Donor

Rating: 5

Dad was a strong PVA supporter, then after I was treated for a TBI, I noticed how much support veterans were getting from the PVA. Now I give to them because I want to support my fellow vets.

51

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I am a combat veteran, trained as an analyst by the army.

I looked up this organization, 62% of income goes for fund raising, "Charity Navigator" gives them a no start rating. Like in diving into unknown waters "look before you leap".

I am not happy with organizations feeding off the veterans.

Review from Guidestar

6

Donor

Rating: 5

One organization or one government can't support the entire veteran population in the way that they need. Supporting our troops is a community responsibility. There are hundreds of non-governmental agencies that provide various veterans services, and all can use contributions of time, money or goods. I choose to support Paralyzed Veterans of America because they are a mature organization nearly 70 years old, and they seem to have a greater understanding of the needs of the general disabled veterans community and the individual needs of service members and their families. They provide a wide variety of programs and services that meet as many needs as they can. A very fine organization.

Review from Guidestar

4

Donor

Rating: 4

What i like about this organization is their willingness to network for the good of their clients; their excellent outreach programs for veterans; and their high-quality publications (PN, Sports 'n Spokes, etc.).

13

Donor

Rating: 5

My son is an Iraqi War Veteran who became paralyzed, and thanks to the PVA he was able to receive all the support possible and the process was very smooth. He received career training from one of their vocational rehabilitation centers at the VA which has the best staff in the world. Without the help from this excellent organization my son would still be in depression and have no quality of life.

Review from Guidestar

7

Donor

Rating: 5

As a young girl I was stricken with encephalitis which has left me in a wheelchair. I had to learn to do everything all over again. Because I know what it's like to live with a disability and because I believe we all need to support our veterans 100% I know my contributions to PVA is the best way to do that.

5

Donor

Rating: 5

The United States of America exists today because of the bravery of countless men and women who have risked everything to protect the freedoms we enjoy. I am proud to say that there are veterans in every branch of my family and many have even laid down their lives for our country. I honor their sacrifice and that of every person in our military. Paralyzed Veterans of America is one of the rare organizations that repays our debt to the men and women of arms. Through the PVA, my family can reach out to those who have lost their hope and help them rebuild their lives. We trust and proudly support this noble organization in its important work.

Review from Guidestar

6

Donor

Rating: 5

As a volunteer and a donor, I feel my time and money have been put to good use. I've seen first hand how the PVA and their staff interact with the PVA veterans in their sports program like trapshooting, and handcyclying, fishing, and wheelchair games. It is so important to give these veterans the opportunity to see what they can accomplish, especially after being so catastrophiclly injureded. Some of these vets are just out of Rehab and to see the sense of accomplishment that they expierence is fantastic.

Review from Guidestar

7

Donor

Rating: 5

My husband and I have been donating to PVA for over 4 years because we care about injured veterans. We have had the pleasure of visiting the DC office and meet the staff and it's important to note that many of the staff are wheelchair-bound and also veterans-they know and understand the plight of those they serve.

Many of the services PVA provides are not visible to the general public, but they are critical to the injured veterans. The advocacy PVA provides to crafting federal legislation and providing adequate benefits is unparalleled - they ARE the paralyzed veterans' advocate in Congress. And they carry this influence because of their Congressional charter and knowledgeable staff. And in addition to this influence on Capitol Hill, they provide services where there would otherwise be a gap - in legal representation, in career development, in achieving a full life.

26

Donor

Rating: 1

I donated last year but when I checked their donations compared to what their expenses are ... For get them! They are talking 99% for expenses. So people check these places out before giving. Google ........the ugly business of stealing money mention for vets,.....by NY Post
.....

3

Donor

Rating: 5

My boyfriend is a veteran and I admire what he has done for our country. I also see him in pain from time to time. We try to contribute as much as we can.

1 Jorge7

Donor

Rating: 4

I lost a relative in Afghanistan and to honor him, I make donation to the PVA when I can. I have noticed that the organization lives up to its goal.
I'm very proud to make my contributions.

Review from Guidestar

4

Donor

Rating: 5

My husband and I contribute to PVA because we like PVA's approach to helping veterans, its work on spinal cord research, and on issues such civil rights for people with disabilities and making sure they get the benefits they deserve.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I want to help those who have difficulty helping themselves. I support PVA for the simple reason that they really help the brave men and women who have given so much to serve our country.

Review from Guidestar

7

Client Served

Rating: 5

Before I got hurt in Iraq , I used to play alot of sports. I got really depressed when I came home. I had no one to talk or relate to and I felt like I had no purpose anymore. A PVA rep at the hospital told me about PVA and how it helps veterans. I got back into sports because of them and am loving life! Every year I compete at their National Veterans Wheelchair Games in hand cycling. They helped me in more ways than just sports and I they are doing a great job.

Review from Guidestar

3

Donor

Rating: 5

The Paralyzed Veterans is the only organization to which I donate. Let's not ever forget our young men who suffered serving our country. Their lives have dramatically changed. I cannot afford to donate much, as I am on a fixed income, but I will give when I can. Thank you for being there for our injured veterans.

3

Donor

Rating: 5

I am a veteran myself and I was looking for a non-profit organization that is taking care of our veterans. Over the years I've learned the extent of the programs ( and continue to learn) and how every donation has a positive impact on services veterans receive. I am thankful for the personal contact and response to any query I may have. PVA is one of the best organizations when it comes to donations as the majority goes directly to the programs, which is of utmost importance to me. I am proud to be a PVA supporter and don't hesitate to recommend this organization to ANYONE looking for a worthy cause!

Review from Guidestar

1

Donor

Rating: 5

"...to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations."

No organization does more for our Vets. That's why we support Paralyzed Veterans of America.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

We have been investing in PVA since the early 1990s. Little did we know that one of our friends would eventually need the help of their National Service Officer. Great mission and great people.

We are proud of our involvment with PVA!

2

Donor

Rating: 5

I had the opportunity to visit the PVA headquarters in Washington DC several years ago. I was extremely
impressed with the staff and management as well as the wide spectrum of services they provide to
our heroes. They understand the challenges that the disabled vet AND his/her family face 20X7 from
dealing with the VA bureaucracy to living a rewarding life. I am proud to be a donor.

Review from Guidestar

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I had the pleasure to work with PVA as I donated my car to them. The process was simple and painless as they provided me with clear, concise instructions on what I needed to do. The towing company was able to take my vehicle while I was at work. Once the vehicle was sold, I received the necessary documentation in a timely fashion so that I could provide to my accountant. Overall, a very easy way to help our paralyzed veterans! Since my initial donation, I have remained in contact with this great organization.

Review from Guidestar

1

Donor

Rating: 5

My wife and I donate to PVA every year, because we know the impact it has in the real world on our veterans who need it. While we usually make several donations which change annually, PVA is always on the list. Their staff are first rate, and we appreciate the honesty from their members and the community when we meet them at events.

Review from Guidestar

41 Ed__21

Donor

Rating: 2

I have, in the past, contributed several times to this organization. But no longer, after reading comments like these...

"What a scam this is. In 2008, they took in 101 million dollars in contributions. They paid out 26 million in salaries and employee benefits, another 4 million for conferences and meetings, and a whopping 59 million for fund raising. So what are the paralyzed veterans getting? "

The defenders say we should just listen to reviews of vets that were helped. That's ridiculous! It's what they do with the totality of the money given them, not just to some isolated individuals. I'm sure they help some, but if the director and employees are getting handsome salaries then its still not right! People who work for charities should be examples of selfless individuals and not in the racket to make money. If they want to do that they should be in another field!

13

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

After reading all this I would send their nickel back but it would cost me 50 cents.

24

Donor

Rating: 1

63% goes to fundraising and some of their top salaries are in the $100,000+ range with the CFO getting $200,000+. I stopped donating when I found that out and told them I don't want to be on their mailing list, the keep sending stuff. No wonder they spend so much on fundraising.

Review from Guidestar

18

Donor

Rating: 1

When i tried to get off their mailing list, they were very rude to me.
Then i read what vets were saying about how horrible theis ripoff organization is so maybe i'll let them mail me the stuff and have the post office charge them for return/refused mail.

22

Donor

Rating: 1

Wow what a nut I have been. I have been donating to PVA for over 2 years. Have checked out how much my dollar actually goes out to our vets. No more! Im going to find a few local vets and help them! Check it out! Do some research..you will be happy you did!

24

Donor

Rating: 3

I have read many reviews here, many of them negative about where the money goes, but you must stop and think about any charity, the Red Cross, the director makes over $600,000.00 a year, the United Way, another big money grab by the directors, want to give to a charity that uses your money the right way, give to the Salvation Army, their director makes $18,000.00 a year.

54

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I too was about to write a check because I have a husband and son-in-laws and many friends that have served our country with honor. I thought "let me see just how much the TRUE veterans are getting and make sure the money goes to THEM. Imagine my shock that the majority of the money goes to FUNDRAISING! In other words the Vet as usual gets little if anything. They bring in over $103,000,000 and when they break down the EXPENSES more than half goes to fundraising and program expenses, so who is helping the Vet? This like everything else smacks our honored men for doing their duty. A veteran in the United States should NEVER EVER GO WITHOUT OR BE HOMELESS!

32

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

Well thank god I researched this charity before I sent out a check. I, myself, am a disabled vet and I am very thankful for what I have and would love to help out a fellow vet in need. I'm not giving these crooks my money. Matter of fact, I was going to send them back the nickle they glued to the return form, but I think I'll keep it. Why waste a postage stamp?

10 Jeffro C.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is a great non profit that helps out this veterans that are paralyzed. Most moneys go to helping out veterans with getting wheelchairs, mental and financial troubles. They also have a lot of activities for theses veterans to do like shooting sports and scuba diving.

Review from Guidestar

33

Donor

Rating: 1

I wrote out my check and was ready to rip it out of the checkbook and mail it when a little bird on my shoulder said "Check the internet, Google them." So I did. I found this site and what I am reading is sad. I have given for years in the past. I have enough labels to wallpaper a room! My check will be shredded and my money donated elsewhere. I am going to Google the D.A.V., I hope I find better news there!

21

Donor

Rating: 1

I keep getting letters with a nickel in them and a ton of address labels. It's IRRATIONALLY guilt inducing to throw the letter in the trash, a great clue to the fact that the whole deal is a scam.

I gave in the past, but no more!

11 Ken_24

Volunteer

Rating: 1

now these bastards have a box in Topeka, ks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Review from CharityNavigator

19

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

i was curious as to the reputation of Paralyed Veterans of America (NH address). Thank God for Charity Navigator!! i tell my friends to check CN on any charity request before donating. shame on these people for collecting so much and using so little for the veterans!

Review from CharityNavigator

13

Donor

Rating: 1

I have never donated before but as wife of retired military I intended to write a check today after their phone call. Then, I checked the internet! Thank you so much for being there to let us know about these scams - and that's what this outfit it! Shame on them!!!!!

13

Donor

Rating: 1

While their 2011 annual report (posted on PVA's website) shows fundraising as about 21 %, I would like to see a breakdown of, at least, the categories of:
Public education
Advocacy, Research
Consumer and Professional Education.

These are popular places to bury major "fundraising" costs.

13

Donor

Rating: 1

The leaders get $800,000???? I get lots of stuff from them in the mail, & from now on will say, "Thank you, Lord" & use them. I sent them a few dollars for some address labels they sent recently, but that will be it. No more money from me to pay these fat cats!!! Our veterans deserve better organizations than this one.

Review from CharityNavigator

22

Donor

Rating: 1

Have been donatting to tis orginization for years. I am retired military and feel it is my responsibility to help injured verterans. Was always upset that they would send me cheep stuph that I did not want. I am more upset now that I know so llittle of what they receive goes to veterans.

Review from CharityNavigator

16

Donor

Rating: 1

I couldn't believe that the PVA had such poor reviews. I was just getting ready to throw a check in the mail tomorrow for their 2013 fundraising drive, but thought I would check out Charity Navigator first. I'm really disappointed in what I've seen regarding this charity on this site. I will be researching other charities for our Veterans and donating elsewhere.

Review from CharityNavigator

34

Donor

Rating: 1

My husband (USAF Ret) and I have been donating to Paralyzed Veterans of America for many years. We were going to make another donation when I remembered the Charity Navigator website. After checking facts and figures, we will NOT be donating. Any charity that spends an excessive amount on fundraising should be closely examined. I'm very disappointed and as another poster stated, I feel duped. With the charity's assets, they could, and should, be helping veterans.

Review from CharityNavigator

14

Donor

Rating: 4

The finanacial data presented here certainly paints a bleak picture of the ration of fundraising to total expenses. I wanted to find out more information on this, so I looked at the 2011 annual report posted on PVA's website. Surprise, it shows fundrainsing as about 21 %. So, is the data used here for evaluations that far off? It looks like it, so I'd be a little more cautious before condemning this organization.

Review from CharityNavigator

13

Donor

Rating: 1

Having donated several times before, I frequently receive correspondence via US mail. I recently received a cheap electronic calculator. Wow, I thought, they had to get these for pennies! They cut the costs by getting calculators MADE IN CHINA! The thought that my donations are being sent to China infuriated me! There is no excuse for this. I wanted to learn more and found that they have a whopping 60% expense rate, of which at least some is going to CHINA. No more donations to PVA for me!

Review from CharityNavigator

12 Rebecca60

Donor

Rating: 1

I have been giving to the Paralyzed Veterans of America for years. I feel REALLY, REALLY duped after having reviewed the ratings and the fact that nearly no money goes to the Vets at all! But, the CEO makes a damned good salary, as do many of the other employees. I learned my lesson and will be giving no more money to this fake charity, that is just a freefall of money to the already rich. DUPED but now wiser. By, the way, there are some good Charities to give to. Navy- Marine Corps Relief Society received an A+ Will be smarter with money in the future. SadToBeScrewedSoSorryVets

Review from CharityNavigator

9

Volunteer

Rating: 2

60% on expensence! You will not repeat not get any donation here after. Plese remove my name and address from you mailing with regrets to the vets. A very poor showingt of benefits to the Paralized Vet. But the big guy gets the bucks. Not a penny more....

Review from Guidestar

9

Donor

Rating: 2

I also have followed the percentage of donation dollars that go to "fund raising" , administrative salaries, and misc expenses and find that these costs are also out of align with what I feel is fair for the receipant and the donor. I also will send f untrue donations to other more responsible veteran charities.

Review from CharityNavigator

5

Donor

Rating: 2

Why is 60% of all funds spent on "Fund Raising"????????

Review from CharityNavigator

35 Sarah76

Donor

Rating: 1

This is an organization whose cause touches me deeply. However, I am shocked to see their statistics: receiving $102 million in contributions, they manage to spend $68.5 million on fundraising--this is outrageously inefficient. Additionally, the organization has four top execs making in or around $200,000. No wonder they get no stars at all. Of the tiny $15 that I was thinking of sending this time, only about $5 will actually help the vets: what a lousy shame!

21

Donor

Rating: 1

Ironically, no matter where I move, Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) seems to locate me and start sending me return-address mailing labels. I actually kind of appreciate them and usually send them a $5.00 check here and there because I feel guilty otherwise. But now, after reading these reviews--forget that!! I don't want to line their pockets if they treat our Veterans like they're yesterday's meatloaf. I'm so sorry their long history of being an established 501(C)(3) Non-profit seems to somehow make them "appear" more credible, when in actuality, they are not. I feel as though God has been putting it on my heart to help our Veterans get jobs and now, I'm more committed than ever. Take care and God bless. Amy

67 Colorado Veteran

Client Served

Rating: 1

I am a 100% service connected disabled veteran with a severe spinal disease combined with gun shot wound and reconstructive surgery issues. I was initially represented by the DAV in applying for service connection for my combat injuries and found their service and support to be a self-serv type group. They point you in the right direction but fall short at giving direct assistance. Frustrated, I sought patient advocate care through the PVA Mountain States Chapter. The representative that assisted me was much more helpful in filling out my appeal for the associated issues that accompanied my combat injuries, but the entire process took over 4 years to get 100% permanent rating. The PVA rep told me they provide life long support and care, but after my initial appointment, I ceased hearing from the PVA except for a monthly onslaught of unsolicited junk mail and a monthly magazine oddly just filled with corporate advertising. Their absentee approach didn't cause harm, after all, I am a grown man and shouldn't need an organization to hold my hand through the fog of military processes. It is nice getting any help when you are on 15-20 meds from drooling on the forms. The staff that ran the office I went to were nice people and I was impressed with their level of professionalism. Their rep that talked with me knew more then any other volunteer I had talked to and can say made a great difference on my decision to switch PVA over as my VHA patient representative.

3 years later I got a letter from a PVA 'NSO' who claimed she was my representative and the letter stated they were checking up on me and asked if I needed anything. Surprised, I called her back and told her of my compound needs and her response was - we are just checking in. Zero follow-up and no help was offered or given. Another year passed and I received the same letter. I wrote PVA back so I was clear in expressing my medical needs they said they would help with and again was ignored. Their response or lack of made me think the PVA only helps us initially to get signed up to report to congress and donors they are serving the most injured vets. They sure made me believe in their offers for assistance but I can affirm that I received no additional assistance other then a couple minutes of their time on the phone getting signed up with them and a couple more minutes of answering basic questions to get help filling out my appeal for my service connected injuries.

I recently discovered leaked sensitive what I thought to be private information I only shared with the Mountain States Chapter reps being shared with part time employees at the VA. I found it very inappropriate this info was shared, but apparently I signed away my privacy rights when I made them my VHA rep. That information being with people that had no intent of ever helping me and god knows who else made that the final straw. The PVA was fired in my case for negligence, ignoring my privacy demands, total failure to follow any issue up and for abandoning me, the veteran when I needed help the most. The PVA promised help getting me back to work, they promised help with adaptive sports for physical therapy, they promised help with my spinal disease with access to specialists, they promised help getting adaptive equipment,.. I received zero assistance with vocational therapy, zero adaptive sports involvement, zero help getting to the spinal injury specialists, zero help getting adaptive equipment, zero help in my home - I had to get my wheel chair, crutches, knee braces and adaptive devices directly from the VA on my own. The PVA is full of hot air and promises.

If there was a rating below the F they received by charitywatch and charity navigator I would say they earned well below that. They should be put out of business for fleecing donors, ignoring veterans and pretending to be govt associated using military titles and military nomenclature to fool donors, vets and Congress about their level of service. They put a couple wheelchair bound vets in pictures and a couple positions on their staff to make everyone think they are ran by vets for vets. Nothing could be further from the truth. In what world does a charitable staff need a 200k+ paycheck while offering nothing but a few minutes on the phone to veterans and a yearly party to waste more donor funds? My direct experience with the Paralyzed Veterans of America organization over 8 year period is that they are as close to frauds as you can get in what they appear to offer veterans. A person off the street that gets PVA advertising receives more financial help then veterans do, I hear they get a nickel in the mail each year. This is only my experience with one chapter, but I don't know how donors can put up with organizations that disguise charity expenses with annual trips to expensive resorts claiming to get together to benefit veterans. The PVA is a sham as my advocate. [sham] noun. 1. something that is not what it purports to be; a spurious imitation; fraud or hoax. The volunteer advocates that worked at the VA were more effective patient advocate then the PVA could ever be and they take two months to answer a response with usually a non-responsive answer that makes you scratch your head. Results can vary so greatly though from person to person, many people in the health business have no business being there. Kind of like how business has no place in charity. I couldn't find one thing that the PVA accomplished in Washington DC to justify going there, other then its a great excuse to have an executive salary with paid expenses, or be an attorney and we all know how much DC lobby attorney's are hurting for money.

Review from CharityNavigator