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2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit

The Silver Star Families of America

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Human Service Organizations, Human Services, Military & Veterans Organizations, Veterans

Mission: To remember, honor and assist the wounded and ill of our Armed Forces from all wars.

Results: ACCOMPLISHMENTS OF THE SILVER STAR FAMILIES OF AMERICA THE SILVER STAR FAMILIES OF AMERICA IS PROUD TO ANNOUNCE THAT WE HAVE REACHED THE 2 MILLION DOLLAR MARK IN DONATIONS to THE WOUNDED AND ILL. The SSFOA was founded in 2004 with one mission: To remember, honor and assist the wounded of our Armed Forces from all wars. Since that time, our members have donated more than 2 million dollars in volunteer time and material all while operating on a shoestring budget. Membership in 2005 8 Membership in 2011 Approx. 5000 Over two thousand Silver Star Banners and Certificates have been provided free of charge to our wounded and ill valued at approx, $40,000. The SSFOA has become a Veterans Administration Volunteer Services Advisory Board Member and we have donated hundreds of care packages and cards and letters to our wounded, ill and homeless valued at approx. $30,000 dollars of donated material being given to Veterans Facilities in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Volunteers with the SSFOA have donated 47,912 hours valued at $934,763.00. http://www.volunteer.va.gov/APPS/VOLUNTEERNOW/calculator.asp The SSFOA is a certifying organization with the Presidential Volunteer awards program and have issued 21 awards. The SSFOA has become one of the leading advocates for those wounded with Post Traumatic Stress with testimony given before Congress. Testifying organization with the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee. The SSFOA is a member of Guide star and 97.6% of every dollar donated goes to program services. The SSFOA is the sponsor of Silver Star Banner Day on May 1st of every year. In 2011, 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands and over 2,900 cities and counties signed proclamations for our wounded. May 1st has been approved as Silver Star Service Banner Day by the United States House and Senate. The SSFOA now has a program to honor Care givers and MWD. We have started a wide variety of programs geared to our wounded and ill: SILVER STAR PROGRAMS FOR WOUNDED AND FAMILIES Silver Star Families assists our wounded and families thru programs geared to help the healing process. It is our wish to help you find avenues to meet your need. We also extend an invitation to join our online community. JOIN SSFOA Visit www.silverstarfamilies.org to see programs details. SILVER STAR BANNER SSFOA wishes to honor all service members injured in the combat zone and/or those with related illnesses including PTSD, Gulf War Syndrome, Agent Orange, and injured by friendly fire. We also honor Purple Heart recipients. To Request a Banner go to HOME page and to REQUEST BANNER GAMES FOR WOUNDED Silver Star Families joins with Soldiers' Angels in their Lend a Hand Program. "Poly Trauma patients enjoy the games, and increase their hand eye coordination," said Steve Newton, Co-founder of The Silver Star Families of America. An article on The Washington Post site quotes the folks at Walter Reed hospital in DC, who report that videogames make excellent therapy sessions for soldiers wounded in the Iraq conflict. In addition to the obvious medical benefits of refining motor control via controllers, the entertainment allows soldiers to reconnect to experiences they may have had prior to their combat experiences. Therapists see the games benefiting patients with nearly any kind of injury, including patients with traumatic brain injuries. Click on GAMES FOR WOUNDED on HOME page to request games for wounded during their hospital stay. HONORING HUNGRY HEROES WITH FOOD CARDS National SSFOA has launched a new program "Honoring Hungry Heroes." McDonald's and Taco Bell gift cards treat our Wounded Heroes to a meal or two at these restaurants and possibly their family too. Wounded or family member may request Food Cards during your hospital stay by clicking on HONORING HUNGRY HEROES. Use the same link if you wish to donate to this worthy cause. SILVER STAR LETTER WRITING TEAM SSFOA members join together in supporting our wounded overseas, statewide and in Veterans hospitals and homes with letters and cards. The team plans to reach a goal of 10,000 letters during the National Salute to Hospitalized Veterans. Please fill out the form at JOIN SSFOA to become a Silver Star volunteer and indicate that you wish to join the Writing Team. PTS and TBI RESOURCES GIVE AN HOUR SSFOA teamed up with Give an Hour an organization dedicated to developing and maintaining a national network of volunteers capable of responding to both acute and chronic conditions that arise within our society. Their first target is the Soldiers and their families who are being affected by the current conflicts. Click on GIVE AN HOUR for details. WHAT IS PTS Symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTS) can be terrifying. They may disrupt your life and make it hard to continue with your daily activities. It may be hard just to get through the day. PTS symptoms usually start soon after the traumatic event, but they may not happen until months or years later. They also may come and go over many years. If the symptoms last longer than 4 weeks, cause you great distress, or interfere with your work or home life, you probably have PTS. More details on www.silverstarfamilies.org FIND HELP IN YOUR AREA I am an American Veteran. Who do I contact for help with PTS? See Area Map Contact your local VA Hospital or Veterans Center located in your telephone book, or call the VA Health Benefits Service Center toll free at 1-877-222-VETS. In addition to its medical centers, VA also has many CBOCs (Community Based Outpatient Clinics) around each state so you can look for one in your community. You can also use any of the information on treatment for the general public. PTS RESOURCES for list of resources go to www.silverstarfamilies.org PTS NEWS DoD Receives Mental Health Task Force Results. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates received the Department of Defense Task Force on Mental Health results and forwarded them to the Congress on June 14.The department will have six months to develop and implement a corrective action plan. REMEMBRANCE OF SERVICE Dedicated to John A. Courant the "Destroyerman" The Silver Star Families of America and the Thank You Foundation wish to say THANK YOU to our many Patriots who have been wounded while actively serving the United States of America by presenting them with a Certificate. Click on REMEMBRANCE OF SERVICE found in the links on www.silverstarfamilies.org Hospice Program Prayers Blankets are provided for our dying veterans. VETERANS PROGRAMS HOMELESS VETERANS: To see a list of of stand downs planned for 2008 and other homeleses Vets resources. INCARCERATED VETERANS The Silver Stars will never forget any wounded Veteran be they homeless or incarcerated. We are there. WOMEN VETERANS See a list of resources to benefit women veterans. VA COMPLAINTS Process for complaints and VA Hotline National Headquarters Silver Star Families of America 525 Cave Hollow Road, Clever, MO 65631-6313

Target demographics: The Wounded and Ill of our Armed Forces

Direct beneficiaries per year: Thousands

Geographic areas served: National/International

Community Stories

30 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Steve

Board Member

Rating: 5

The best organization I have seen. 97 cents of every dollar goes to our wounded, ill, injured and dying veterans.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am proud this organization spends 97 cents of every dollar on its mission

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10

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I joined the Silver Star Fmilies of America after my son, a US Marine, was wounded in Iraq. In addition to honoring and aiding those members of our military, wounded while serving in a war zone, they have provided moral support, friendship and understanding to me and my family. I have been honored to be able to help our troops in any small way that I can, whether it's raising money for banners to present the wounded, sending cards and letters to the troops and those hospitalized, or just offering a kind word and support to their families. The Silver Star Families of America has made it possible. They are a great and loving bunch, and I am proud to be one of them.

12

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I got involved with Silver Star Families after one of my sons best buddies in the MANG was injured, and trying to navigate the complex VA system to get his rating. He wanted to continue serving, but couldn't do so until he got his rating. After talking with him and hearing the hoops he had to jump through and continue to jump through, I wanted to make a difference. I'm a vet myself, but served during the Cold War, I wanted to make a change and difference for the returning vets, especially the National Guard service member. Especially since they are like the forgotten ones of the military. In researching organizations, I came across Silver Star families, and read what they were all about, Honoring our Wounded. That was an organization I wanted to be involved with. This organization truly cares about the wounded and trying to make changes for their benefit. I am proud to be apart of this great organization.

11

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I joined Silver Star Families of America looking for a place I felt comfortable at while working for and with our military and veterans. I was looking for a way to honor the thousands of wounded military members and veterans that suffer from visible and invisible wounds. There are many organizations that honor the visible wounds, but very few that honor the invisible ones. The invisible wounds are the ones that are dear to my heart as I watch my son and see what he experiences. SSFOA members do not allow any hero's sacrifice to go unnoticed, the members within the organization appreciate and show they care through the pride and effort they give in all the programs. It is very heart warming to come to any member and feel when they say they support the wounded, that it comes from deep within them and they will not harm the integrity of any of those that are wounded. I feel honored and privileged to work with the members of this organization, but to be able to present a banner that the wounded member richly deserves just thrills the soul to watch them with pride written all over their face while accepting it. The wounded warriors deserve to feel human and they deserve recognition. We cannot forget those injured in war, no matter what type of injury they suffer from and no matter what war it occurred in. The volunteers and the board members keep things organized and controlled while faithfully serving. And the cofounders of SSFOA did those injured a genuine service by starting this organization and anyone can tell, as they talk with them, that their hearts are completely in this effort. The wounded will not be forgotten with this organization moving forward continuously.

10

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Being a member of Silver Star Families of America is an honor and priviledge. I have received more joy out of what it stands for and honoring our wounded and ill soldiers. The joy that I feel when I write a letter to a wounded soldier or to a Veteran that needs a boost makes my heart soar. This organization is more that just that. We are family. I have found a home here, and I intend on doing everything in my power that I can do to make sure that every city in this country signs a proclamation to make May 1st Silver Star Banner Day a National day of observance to honor our wounded and ill. The two people who are the founders of SSFOA are angels sent from heaven. Without them this never would have been. Then we have a wonderful team from our president to the rest of the officers of our organization. Each and everyone of them put forth so much that you can't help but want to take part. It warms your heart to know what you've done for a soldier or veteran. I thank G-d everyday for being a part of this wonderful family. I am truly blessed to know all of these people. As our founder says, "Let us NEVER lose site of the mission, which is to promote, protect, honor and help our wounded and their families. May God continue to bless American and ALL of her troops!"

10

Volunteer

Rating: 5

SSFOA is a wonderful organization who honors our wounded and ill service members. Being a volunteer in the SSFOA, who relys totally on donations, it is great to know that 98% of the funds raised goes toward the purchase of Silver Star Banners and programs directly assisting wounded and ill members of our Armed Forces. The heart of the org is to make sure that ALL who were wounded or incurred illnesses while honorably serving our country during wartime know we shall never forget their sacrifice and sevice. The SSFOA goes beyond wounds that are seen to also include wounds and illnesses that our service members suffer as a result of keeping our country safe and served in a combat situation. Our mission is to say THANK YOU, we HONOR YOU, WE WILL NEVER FORGET, and we do this primarilay by presenting Silver Star Banners to our wounded or ill war Heroes. This organization is awesome and I am proud to be a part of their wonderful mission.