When you think about the sacrifice our men and women in uniform have undertaken for our country, one honestly can’t put into words how grateful we are. They literally offer up their lives for service. When they come home, they should be treated with the utmost respect and grace, and most certainly should not be taken advantage of. However, one group that has been very vocal and outgoing in their supposed help of wounded veterans coming home seems to be using them to make money for themselves.
The Wounded Warrior Project is one of the most visible groups out there raising money for veterans. They have commercials, big events, and publicity. On the surface, they look like a very reputable organization. However, as CBS News investigated, it looks as though they are, quite literally, wasting donation money, and they’re not really hiding it either.
According to CharityNavigator.org, Wounded Warrior Project only spends 60% of the money they take in on the actual services that help veterans. That may sound pretty great until you realize that other groups like Disabled American Veterans Charitable Service Trust (DAV) utilizes nearly 97% of their funds towards going directly to veterans.
According to Army Staff Sergeant Erick Millette, who actually worked as a public speaker for Wounded Warrior project back in 2013:
“Their mission is to honor and empower wounded warriors, but what the public doesn’t see is how they spend their money.”
Also telling CBS News:
“You’re using our injuries, our darkest days, our hardships, to make money. So you can have these big parties… Let’s get a Mexican mariachi band in there, let’s get maracas made with [the] WWP logo, put them on every staff member’s desk. Let’s get it catered and have a big old party… Going to a nice fancy restaurant is not team building. Staying at a lavish hotel at the beach here in Jacksonville, and requiring staff that lives in the area to stay at the hotel is not team building.”
A four-day conference for 500 staff members in Colorado for “team building” had a price tag of around $3 million. That’s money that should be going to veterans. They are literally using the money to throw themselves lavish events instead of honor the veterans they are supposedly serving. The entire thing is almost obscene.
Wounded Warrior Project’s chief executive
And while they are still raising money for veterans and using that money towards the needs and services of those who need them, please think twice before donating and perhaps donate to another group instead. If they are pulling in over $300 million, but only 60% is going towards veterans, that’s nearly $120 million not going to veterans that should be.
Wounded Warriors Project’s mission is “To honor and empower Wounded Warriors.” However, where’s the honor in skimming off the top of all their much-needed money to throw themselves parties all over the country?
Watch here to see the CBS News investigation:
Featured image: Jacksonville.com