- - Friday, November 27, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Although Veterans Day may be over, America’s appreciation for those who have served their great nation continues to shine year-round.

After the recent release of watchdog reports revealed sustained problems within the Veterans’ Administration hospital system, citizens nationwide have been outraged.

But some have turned their outrage into action and are working to fill the void of service left by the VA.

Twenty-six year-old Afghanistan veteran and small business owner Anthony Reynolds and his business partner, Counter Intelligence Analyst Joshua Walker, have set out alongside eight small businesses across the state of Ohio to help fill this gap by raising money for Wounded Warrior Project (WWP).

“We see how difficult it can be for veterans to receive funding and treatment from the VA, and we think that our veterans deserve better,” said Mr. Reynolds.

Mr. Reynolds and Mr. Walker have set a goal to raise $100,000 and plan to donate this money to WWP on Veterans Day in 2016.

And they aren’t the only ones who have been inspired to donate to WWP.

Businesses ranging from restaurants and grocery stores to dentist offices and clothing outfitters have engaged in similar initiatives to raise money for the nonprofit organization.

In fact, few veteran nonprofit organizations have been fortunate enough to receive the amount of support and experience the amount of success that WWP has.

Out of the 45,000 nonprofit organizations that serve veterans in the U.S., 80 percent of them generate less than $100,000 in revenue in each year.

However, WWP generates millions in revenue annually and has nearly doubled its revenue each year since its creation in 2003.

In 2014 alone, WWP generated over $342 million in revenue, up from approximately $26 million in 2009.

This increase in funds has allowed WWP to serve almost 77,000 veterans through 20 free programs and countless services, all of which have assisted in filling the gap for veterans who have not received treatment at all or who were previously receiving inadequate treatment from the VA.

WWP plans to serve 100,000 warriors by 2017 through the receipt of more donations from businesses and individuals across the country.

“Being that we are a veteran owned business, we think that is very important to give back to those who give so much to us and I know other businesses feel the same,” said Mr. Reynolds.

This attitude of gratitude has been shown by businesses and individuals alike and has played and will continue to play a critical role in helping WWP serve its purpose to raise awareness and to enlist the public’s aid for the needs of injured service members.

Madison Gesiotto is a staff editor for the Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law. The author’s views are her own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law.

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