Wouned Warrior Project

102,855

That is how many veterans Wounded Warrior Project is serving.

Not a bad number in the larger scheme of things, right?  I mean, 102,855 wounded veterans? America has had veterans wounded since the American Revolution!  In all that time to only have 102,855 veterans in need of support from Wounded Warrior Project is pretty good… except that isn’t reality.

Wounded Warrior Project only serves “veterans and service members who incurred a physical or mental injury, illness, or wound, co-incident to their military service on or after September 11, 2001.”  At the time of this review, that is less than 16 years.  Wounded Warrior Project works with these injured veterans and their families to help them adjust to life after and make sure there is really LIFE after, not just existence.

According to statistics published on the Wounded Warrior Project website for every U.S. military member killed in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, 7 more were wounded.  That count does not include the internal wounds so many service members return with – PTSD, TBI, depression and sadly, much more.

In 2016, Wounded Warrior Project experienced a bit of a scandal when CBS reported that in 2014 $26 million had been spent on staff “parties”.  To be fair, these “parties” included training, planning sessions and the like as well as events for alumni that included staff, and, yes, some parties – an amount perceived as an excessively large.  The scandal sent shockwaves through Wounded Warrior Project’s community of alumni and donors alike.  The CEO and COO were fired and internal controls strengthened in an effort to prevent misappropriation of money and abuse of donor and alumni trust in future.  A review of the numbers indicates that is happening.

Of the money raised by/donated to Wounded Warrior Project,

  • 75% goes directly to programs and services
  • Administrative expenses are only 5% of their overall budget.
  • While they did spend nearly 20% of their budget on fundraising initiatives. That equates to about $0.16 per dollar raised being spent to generate those revenues. A clear demonstration of “it takes money to make money”.[i]

In full disclosure, I support Wounded Warrior Project.  I believe in their mission and the work they do.  Are they the best charity supporting wounded veterans?  I don’t know.  But I trust them.  Every organization goes through ups and downs.  This one is no exception.  But they appear to have taken the bull by the horns and are making great strides in regaining their reputation among the community and their alumni.

To learn more about Wounded Warrior Project, visit their website at https://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/

 

Their tax filings and a great deal of information about Wounded Warrior Project are available at:

https://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=search.summary&orgid=12842

https://www.guidestar.org/profile/20-2370934


[i] www.charitynavigator.org