GratitudeAmerica operates with a lean budget, leveraging in-kind donations, valuable partnerships, and a small but mighty staff to keep monthly operating costs low. Nearly 87% of our budget goes towards helping Veterans. Your support will provide GratitudeAmerica the means to continue our first-class programs.

The dolphin experience had to be the most therapeutic point for me. The connection between the dolphin and myself felt incredible and took my mind off all that I had been through. 

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    London Beck, USMC Veteran

The Need

Statistically, Post-9/11 Vets are about twice as likely as their Pre-9/11 counterparts to have served in a combat zone. Consequently, they are more likely to suffer mental, emotional, and physical scars. 42% of Post-9/11 Veterans (compared with only 17% of Pre-9/11 Veterans) say deployment negatively impacted their mental health. Many Post-9/11 Vets survived war in a distant land—only to return home to fight an internal battle with their trauma and mental health. Nearly 20 Veterans die by suicide every day in the U.S.—or about 500 a month, 6,000+ every year. Veterans are 1.5 times more likely to die by suicide than nonveterans.

Source: U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs (2019)

It’s not only suicide that robs Veterans of a full life … 

Other threats include: 

  • Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Alcohol and drug abuse
  • Broken marriages and relationships
  • Depression
  • Anxiety 

As much as 30% of troops deployed post-9/11 test positive for depression or PTSD. 

Soldiers are strong, resilient, and combat-trained to bear tremendous burdens.

But like anyone else, they are vulnerable to trauma, despite society’s common depiction of them being invincible. 

How do we use the money?  What impact does it have? 

  • Over the past seven years, more than 1,500 Vets and supporters have participated in 50 retreats. GratitudeAmerica’s model is unique – and is making an impact. Traditional interventions for Veterans include medication, talk therapy, and exposure therapy. These interventions can be effective, although they encourage Vets to focus on and return to life before the trauma.
  • Our programs lead Vets beyond their trauma, which they come to embrace as part of their story, not as the experience that defines their life going forward.
  • GratitudeAmerica operates with a lean budget, utilizing a small but mighty staff and in-kind donations and partnerships to keep monthly operating costs low. Nearly 87% of our budget goes toward direct programming. Your support will help fill the funding gap GratitudeAmerica needs from the philanthropic community. We leverage our resources, ensuring your gift is stretched to effectively support our programming and give back to the Veterans we serve.

Examples Of What your donation supports:

  • $2,000 funds a four‐day Military Support Retreat for a Veteran and his or her support person.
  • $1,000 would sponsor a combat Veteran to attend our program, paying for all lodging, meals, and activities.
  • $500 provides Equine therapy for an entire Military Support Retreat.
  • $250 funds the purchase of a Stand Up Paddle Board experience for all Military Support Retreat attendees
  • $100 funds the resources needed for group team building exercises that teach communication and connection.
  • $50 supports a dolphin encounter for a Veteran at a Military Support Retreat.