Military-Oriented Charities

There a literally hundreds of charities around the country that support our military members and their families. Before you donate, be sure to investigate.

The Corte Bella Vets became exempt from federal income tax under Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 501 (c) (3) and designated as a Public Charity on April 15, 2015.  While there are many other worthwhile organizations out there, as an organization, we chose to only provide our support to charitable organizations that meet all of the following criteria: 
 
  1. Must not have more than 10% “overhead”
  2. Must be supporting military in Arizona
  3. Must be able to provide tax receipts and/or tax credits
There may be more organizations that meet these criteria, but the ones we have checked out and know they meet the criteria are listed in the following sections.  Each year we'll either select one or two of these organizations to support with our fund raising efforts or simply attempt to utilize the funds we raise to support throughout Arizona while focusing on Phoenix's Northwest Valley.
 
The first number in parenthesis is the percentage of contributions that go to Veterans. The next set of numbers is type of organization according to IRS code. Information was current as of April 2014.

In 2016, we expanded our charitable donations to include assistance directly to needy Veterans or Veteran Families. We named this effort our "Veterans Emergency Assistance Fund".  In order to make sure our funds would be put to good use without having to create our own screening and vetting process and duplicate the efforts of others, we chose to respond to requests generated by the Social Workers at the Northwest Veterans Affairs Health Care Clinic in Surprise, Arizona.

Our primary support takes the form of $25 gift certificates good at Fry's or Walmart (food and/or gas) distributed by the Social Workers on an "as needed basis". Occassionally, $25 is not enough to meet a Veteran or Family emergency and we support to the maximum extent we can.

For more information about the organizations we support, please click on the "MORE" menu button above and then click on a specific organization you are interested in.  You may also download the document below for your use.
Download
Charities Information Word Document

Support Provided

AdoptaPlatoon Soldier Support Effort
501 (c) (3) http://adoptaplatoon.org/

AdoptaPlatoon Soldier Support Effort® founded in 1998 is a nonprofit 501C-3 dedicated to serving deployed United States Service Men and Women ensuring that they are not forgotten by a grateful Nation.  AdoptaPlatoon strives to provide care packages that help improve Troops’ quality of life and lift their morale as they serve far from home and assist military families. AdoptaPlatoon provides an on-going mail support system, creates projects that meet the need of military requests, and establishes special projects that benefit deployed Troops representing all branches of the U.S. military.

America's Mighty Warriors

Mission: Our mission is to honor the sacrifices of our troops, the fallen and their families by providing programs that improve quality of life, resiliency and recovery. America's Mighty Warriors an Arizona 501c3 was founded in 2008 by Debbie Lee in response to her son Marc Lee's last letter home, he was the first Navy SEAL killed in Iraq. He challenged his family and friends to "pass on the kindness, the love, the precious gift of human life." (Marc was one of the main characters in the movie American Sniper.) AMW hosts retreats for Gold Star and wounded warriors, provides Hyperbaric Oxygen treatments and other therapies to help with TBI and PTS, provides random acts of kindness, educates and advocates for our troops, hosts families of our fallen at the Heroes Hope Home in Surprise AZ. AMW has supported, honored and helped thousands of our veterans and families of our fallen heroes in AZ.
  Arizona Elk Society – “Hunts for Heroes”
http://arizonaelksociety.com

The Arizona Elks Society (AES) has launched “Hunts for Heroes” an Arizona wounded warrior hunt program.  Their mission is to provide hunting opportunities in AZ for our returning military veterans who have been left with a disability while in service of our Nation’s military.  AES has recognized the void in many of our veterans that have impacted their ability to enjoy the outdoors and hunting activities.  AES’ goal is to provide great opportunities for men and women to get back into the woods, and be able to enjoy the woods, and be able to enjoy the Great Outdoors of Arizona and to heal through hunting.
  

Arizona Stand Down

(95) 501(c) (3)  http://arizonastanddown.org /

Mission: The Arizona Stand Down is an alliance of community-based organizations that come together to provide annual, one to three day events that bring together the State's homeless and at-risk military veterans, connecting them with services ranging from: VA HealthCare, Mental Health Services, Clothing, Meals, Emergency Shelter, Transitional and Permanent Housing, ID/ Drivers License's, Court Services and Legal Aide, Showers and Haircuts and myriad other services and resources.  Arizona Stand Downs are held at various locations throughout the State with the largest, serving approximately 1,500 veterans, at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum at the Arizona State Fairgrounds in Maricopa County.
  
  CAMP CORRAL​​
(86) 501 (c) (3)   http://campcorral.org

The mission of Camp Corral is to transform the lives of children of wounded, injured, ill, and fallen military heroes (ages 8 to 15) by providing a unique summer camp experience.  The Arizona Camp is held at Triangle Y Ranch which is located in Oracle, AZ.  The cost of this 1 week camp experience is $600 per child.  Camp Corral is supported by their founding sponsor Golden Corral, Disabled American Veterans, and other donors.

The vision behind Camp Corral is one where kids, ages 8 to 15, are free to be kids, far away from the day-to-day challenges they face as children of military service members and veterans. We partner with some of the best camps around the United States to host each session. Camp Corral has proven to be a “week of a lifetime," providing kids non-stop fun with activities like canoeing, swimming, fishing, arts and crafts, ropes course challenges, horseback riding, and more. Campers have the priceless opportunity to connect with other kids who understand the unique challenges that come with military life. Each of our host camps provides top-quality programming that teaches the skills needed to build emotional resilience. The positive effects may follow a child for a lifetime.

Disabled American Veterans, Department of Arizona

(100) 501(c) (19) http://www.azdav.org /

Purpose: The purpose of the Disabled American Veterans, Department of Arizona, shall be to uphold and maintain the Constitution and the laws of the United States; to realize the true American ideals and aims for which those eligible to membership fought; to advance the interests and work for the betterment of all wounded, gassed, injured and disabled veterans, to cooperate with the United States Department of Veterans Affairs and all other public and private agencies devoted to the cause of improving and advancing the condition, health, and interest of all wounded, gassed, injured and disabled veterans; to stimulate a feeling of mutual devotion, helpfulness and comradeship among all wounded, gassed, injured and disabled veterans; to serve our comrades, our communities, and our country; and to encourage in all people that spirit of understanding which will guard against future wars.
  
  DRIVE BY BLESSINGS
501 (c) (3)  http://drivebyblessingsaz.org

Drive by Blessing’s primary goal is to assist homeless and disabled veterans as they transition from homelessness.  Drive by Blessings has a Veterans Furniture and Family Support Program; whereby volunteers move Veterans into apartments, assist with setting up furniture, making beds, washing dishes, even leaving behind household items and supplies.  They also assist Veterans with finding jobs.  In addition they have their own coffee company, called Shock & Ahh.  In the future their website, DrivebyBlessing.org will provide information on how to purchase their coffee.

Drive by Blessings has also partnered with Tierra Madre Horse Sanctuary to develop the Veterans Equine Therapy (V.E.T.) program.  This program allow veterans the opportunity to learn about rescued horses, the psychological traumas the animals have experienced and how those experiences relate directly to the Veteran themselves.  Horses and humans help heal one another. 

Fisher House Arizona

(96) 501(c) (3) http://www.fisherhouse.org/

 Mission: The Fisher House program is a unique private-public partnership that supports America's military in their time of need. The program recognizes the special sacrifices of our men and women in uniform and the hardships of military service by meeting a humanitarian need beyond that normally provided by the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs.
These homes are located at major military and VA medical centers nationwide, close to the medical center or hospital they serve. Fisher Houses have up to 21 suites, with private bedrooms and baths. Families share a common kitchen, laundry facilities, a warm dining room and an inviting living room. Fisher House Foundation ensures that there is never a lodging fee. Since inception, the program has saved military and veterans’ families an estimated $235 million in out of pocket costs for lodging and transportation.
Fisher House Foundation also operates the Hero Miles program, using donated frequent flyer miles to bring family members to the bedside of injured service members as well as the Hotels for Heroes program using donated hotel points to allow family members to stay at hotels near medical centers without charge. The Foundation also manages a grant program that supports other military charities and scholarship funds for military children, spouses and children of fallen and disabled veterans.
  

Honor Flight Arizona

   (95) 501(c) (3)  http://honorflightaz.org /

          Mission: The mission of Honor Flight Arizona is to pay homage to our WWII veterans by providing the support needed for them to complete a three-day journey of honor and remembrance to their memorial in Washington, D.C. at no cost to them.  To accomplish this, we plan to raise adequate funding to send 250 veterans on eight trips in 2014.  Our secondary mission is to educate our youth about the impact of WWII and our WWII veterans on the freedom of our nation.
 
They are 100% all volunteers. Another thing that we even like is let's say you have a WWII veteran that has not travelled. Corte Bella could sponsor the vet. You could raise $900 in whatever manner you would like. He or she would likely be pushed up on the waiting list because your group provided the funding. The $900 would cover the veteran’s round trip airfare, 2 night’s hotel stay, food for the 3 days and the seat on the nice coach bus we use to get around the Baltimore/DC area. That $900 could go directly to sponsoring that veteran's travel. We could provide a vets name to sponsor from our list if you did not have one also. 
  
  HORSE RHYTHM FOUNDATION (HRF)
501 (c) (3)   http://www.horserhythm.org/

HRF is designed to offer specialized services for veterans, first responders, and their families suffering with mental health disorders, PTS, physical disabilities, traumatic brain injuries, amputation, etc. due to combat or public safety tragedies. HRF offers educational equine assisted services in an effort to bridge the gap between the effects of combat incidents and the restoration of wellness.  They work with individuals or groups allowing the interactions between the veteran and horse to facilitate emotional and physical healing.

Madison Street Veterans Association (or MSVA): M.A.N.A House

          (90) 501(c) (3)  http://madisonstreetveterans.org /

Mission: Madison Street Veterans Association is a peer support organization of homeless and formerly homeless veterans.  At our Outreach Center veterans are able to access transportation to Veterans Administration and employment facilities, obtain copies of military service documents, use computers for job search, email, and benefits applications, local and long distance telephone service, and check out bicycles.  Veterans are also encouraged to participate in volunteer and community action events and activities, and collaborate with other partner veterans’ organizations such American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and Vietnam Veterans of America.  As of May 2010, MSVA operates the MANA House (Marines, Army, Navy, Air Force), a transitional housing facility for 50 veterans located on the top floor of the YWCA in central Phoenix, conveniently located just 1.5 miles from the VA Hospital.
 
Madison Street Veterans Association is a program of Lodestar Day Resource Center which is a 501 (c) (3) organization.  Donations are made to LDRC but can be designated for MSVA only.
  
  Mary Ellen’s Place – Veterans First
501 (c) (3)  http://veteransfirstltd.org

Mary Ellen’s place is named in memory and in honor of Mary Ellen Piotrowski a U.S. Navy Woman Veteran.  Mary Ellen’s provides affordable individual studio apartment housing for single Women Veterans along with supportive services and programs that prevent homelessness and stabilize lives.  Their program provides financial and in-kind assistance with rent, utilities, food, bus passes, vehicles, gift cards, computers, education, job assistance, household and personal items and children’s needs.  

  Military Family Support Group
  501(c)(3)  http://militaryfamilysupportgroup.org  

Since January 2003, sends approximately 150-300 care packages monthly to our troops (except June, July, August, and December. Unpacking Begins @ 4:00P and Packing Begins @ 5:30 at the Peoria Community Center – located at 8335 West Jefferson Street, Peoria, AZ.

They welcome volunteers to assist with the packing of boxes the last Wednesday of every month (except June, July, August, and December).  Cash donations, can goods, white sox, white t-shirts, snacks, puzzles, books, playing cards, small toiletries, etc., are accepted year round.
  

  Project Veterans Pride – James Walton Home
501 (c) (3)  http://pvpjwh.org

Project Veterans Pride is an organization which was founded by Military Veterans in August 2011.  The James Walton Home is a transitional home for homeless men veterans offering a comprehensive 30/60/90 day program.  Residents use their time to seek permanent employment, get needed medical treatment through the Veterans Administration, and obtain job training.  James Walton Home services include:  transitional rapid emergent housing, nutritional meals, counseling and case management, community job training workshops, and support service assistance.
  

S.E.E.4Vets
Support Education and Employment for Veterans
501(c) (3)  http://see4vets.org/

We collaborate with Arizona community colleges in shaping and implementing programs that tends to improve student veteran retention, and inspire these veterans to “persist and advance” in their school work. In addition, we provide student veteran-employer business connect venues as a way to promote the unique and specific talents former service members can bring to the workplace.

As we move into an era where the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq recede into the history books, and many of our war-tested veterans transition out of the military and into civilian life, the number taking advantage of the ability to enhance their educational credentials will indeed increase.

Some projections state that 73% of all separating or retiring service members plan to use the benefits the GI Bill affords. Arizona should ready itself for an expected influx of a significant number of veterans who will enroll in our community colleges and major universities using their GI Bill benefits.

In 2011-12, veterans comprised 4 percent of the overall undergraduate population of U.S. colleges and universities. Their numbers are growing however. The estimate is that five million Post-9/11 service members will have left the military by 2020, and scores of them will likely enter higher education using VA educational benefits, such as the Post-9/11 GI Bill. A majority of the veterans will enroll in community colleges and for-profit colleges.

The elite-team of S.E.E.4Vets has travelled the state visiting college chancellors and presidents. While some institutions are addressing the needs of the student veterans well, others are just in the nascent stages of addressing the specific needs of their student veteran populations. With a focus on those institutions with the greatest needs, one of S.E.E4Vets’primary objectives is to provide support and facilitate assistance to these institutions in every facet of their programs to assist their student veteran populations.

For the majority of student veterans and their families completing their education and achieving their academic goals this is just their first step in post-military life.  Securing meaningful and productive employment is also part of the post-military journey for these veterans. Educating employers on unique and specific talents former service members can bring to the workplace, facilitating business internships and mentorships, and encouraging networking between business leaders and student veterans are activities that S.E.E. 4Vets will pursue.

United for Change
(Veterans Furniture Center)

(95+) 502 (c) (3) http://unitedforchange.org /

Mission: We are community partners with Project H3: Vets, a program aimed at getting medically vulnerable veterans off the street. United for Change administers the VASH Bridge Program, a partnership with the Arizona Department of Veteran Services, the Phoenix Veterans and Military Foundation and HUD/VASH.
 
We operate the Veterans for Veterans furniture bank, which provides furnishings to veterans (at no cost to them) as they transition from homelessness into housing. We also sponsor, provide and serve home cooked dinners for local veterans living in a transitional facility.
 
Many members of our group have volunteered at the Arizona Standdown for several years in a row and in addition to supporting this organization with $5,000 donations in 2011 and 2012, we have furnished hygiene kits for the veterans, 1,200 kits for 2012! We partnered with KUPD radio station and the great Fitz Madrid who in 2009 sponsored a blanket drive. In 2010, 2011 and 2012, it was towels.
 
United for Change also helps veterans on an individual basis.  We have provided funding for rent, utilities, and food to a number of veterans in need.
 
No one in our organization is paid for what he or she does.  We give our time, our money, our sweat and our tears to make the lives of our struggling veterans a little better.  After all, that same veteran was willing to put his/her life on the line to preserve our freedom.  
  Upbytheirbootstraps 
501 (c) (3)  http://upbytheirbootstraps.org

This organization is committed to give a “Hand Up” NOT a “Hand Out” by furnishing dependable transportation, temporary housing, and home repairs to members of the military, veterans, and their families.  Upbytheirbootstraps provides assistance in many ways to ensure a smooth transition for military families and an easier transition to civilian life.
  
  THE SOCIETY OF ST. VINCENT DEPAUL – OZANAM MANOR
http://stvincentdepaul.net

Ozanam Manor serves mentally ill, medically disabled and older homeless veterans (and non-veterans).  The provide bridge housing and their goal is to help residents move into permanent housing.  A significant part of their care involves coordination and transportation to psychiatric, medical and other appointments for needed income and housing resources.  This also includes taxis for veterans who are unable to us public transportation successfully due to the severity of their illness/disability.  Ozanam Manor also has a contract with the Veterans Administration Health Care for homeless Veterans Program.  NOTE:  Since Ozanan Manor provides assistance for veterans and non-veterans the Corte Bella Veterans Organization has received assurances in writing that our donations will be used for Veterans Only.
  

SOLDIERS BEST FRIEND

Since January 2011, Soldiers Best Friend provides U.S. military veterans living with combat related Post Traumatic Stress (PTS) and/or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) with Service or Therapeutic companion dogs.  Most of the dogs are rescued from local shelters.  The veteran and dog train together and take an average of 6-9 months to master all the skills they need to succeed.  All placement and training fees are at NO cost to the veteran.
  
  VETERANS EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE

The Corte Bella Veterans Organization works directly with Social Workers from the Veterans Administration Clinic in Surprise, AZ (Stephanie Nix (623) 266-8421). We have assisted with providing Fry’s Gift Cards which are given to Veterans who have been determined to be experiencing a financial hardship.  These gift cards are in a $25 denomination and can be used for either for food and/or gasoline. In addition we have assisted with providing a queen bed, partial rent, utilities, car repairs, and mortgages, etc. assistance as identified by the VA Social Worker.
  

Veterans for Veterans in Arizona

 Mission: The mission of Veterans For Veterans is to supply donated household items and other needed items to formerly homeless veterans to help start in furnishing their homes as they reenter society.
The objectives of Veterans For Veterans are to: a. Collect household items and other needed items from donors and offer donors a tax deduction to the extent allowed by law for their donations, b. Provide donated household items and other needed items to veterans who have been referred to Veterans For Veterans by a veteran social worker, veteran counselor, veteran assistance agency or any other military organization. The referred veteran must provide proof of a residential lease signed within thirty (30) days prior to receipt of donated furnishings, and c. Provide formerly homeless veterans household items and other needed items at no cost.

WHAM Art Association

(95) 501 (c) (3) http://www.wham-art.org /

Mission: The organization was created primarily to support the Northwest Valley of Phoenix Metro including but not limited to: Surprise, Sun City West, Sun City, El Mirage, North Peoria, West Glendale, Youngstown, Buckeye, and Wickenburg areas. In addition to helping to promote local artists through exhibits throughout the West Valley, WHAM is also involved in numerous projects such as: public art murals, art festivals, art walks, and community art classes. 
WHAM is offering a new program called Art: A Path to Healing aimed at helping Veterans with PTSD.  The Over thirty years of scientific investigation have demonstrated that creative expression can alter not just moods, attitudes and emotions, but helps individuals acquire a sense of purpose and accomplishment.  This program is not designed to heal an individual with PTSD but to help them in their path to cope with everyday life. WHAM’s professional artists will be offering instruction in drawing, oil painting & acrylics, woodworking, pottery, digital photography, gourd making and metal art.
Note:  This new program is open to all Veterans, not just those with PTSD.  If we choose to donate to WHAM, we can specify our donation is only for this particular program.