As the year comes to a close, the Bob Woodruff Foundation marches into its tenth year positioned to serve even more post-9/11 injured service members, veterans and their families, building upon 2015’s accomplishments.
This includes more than $4.2 million in grants awarded this year to nearly four-dozen nonprofits, addressing a myriad of critical issues while impacting the lives of nearly 250,000.
“We are extremely grateful for the support received over this past year, affording us the opportunity to make a positive investment in the next chapter of today’s veterans lives,” said Anne Marie Dougherty, executive director of the Bob Woodruff Foundation.
Founded in 2006, the Bob Woodruff Foundation creates long-lasting, positive outcomes for our nation’s wounded, ill and injured veterans, service members and their families, by finding, funding and shaping initiatives that enrich the lives of these heroes.
Beyond grants, the Bob Woodruff Foundation supported several events—the biggest of which was the Walk of Britain, a 1,000-mile journey by British and American wounded veterans that created awareness for issues on both sides of the Atlantic, with UK-charity Walking With The Wounded.
Other events included the annual Warrior Games in Quantico, Va., the Philanthropy-Joining Forces Impact Pledge Anniversary in Washington, D.C., and a screening of the blockbuster film “American Sniper” in Austin, Texas, which helped generate a broader discussion of the hidden wounds of war.
In partnership with Veterans on Wall Street, the Bob Woodruff Foundation commissioned the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) to explore the future of resources and support for our military and veterans in context of the upcoming presidential election. The findings were published in “Passing the Baton: A Bipartisan 2016 Agenda for the Veteran and Military Community.” The paper is a comprehensive overview of issues facing the veteran and military community and a plan with substantive recommendations for how the next president can best serve the veteran and military community.
“This report is the first of its kind to comprehensively breakdown the demographics and issues facing today’s veterans,” said Dougherty. “Today’s all-volunteer military looks much different than the generations preceding it, and there are unique needs that must be considered. The decisions made by the next commander in chief will greatly affect the role the private sector and nonprofits play in caring for our veterans and their families.”
Much of the organization’s support came from the 9th Annual Stand Up for Heroes, in partnership with the New York Comedy Festival, which raised a record-breaking $6.2 million while using comedy and music to raise awareness. It did so thanks to the support of several sponsors, including Veterans on Wall Street, founding sponsor GFI Group Inc., and the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation.
Additionally, a gift from Prudential empowered the Bob Woodruff Foundation to invest in a dozen programs focused on removing barriers to education and employment, thereby creating pathways to longer-term success and meaningful lives.
Looking ahead to 2016, the foundation will celebrate a decade of support since Bob Woodruff was severely injured by a roadside bomb, Jan. 29, 2006, while covering the war in Iraq for ABC News. According to Dougherty, the opportunity for veterans and their families to thrive is grounded in replicating the long-term support network and commitment the Woodruff family had during Bob’s recovery.
Since its founding, the Bob Woodruff Foundation has invested nearly $30 million in finding, funding and shaping innovative programs across the country. Learn more about the Bob Woodruff Foundation’s impact online at www.BobWoodruffFoundation.org.
About the Bob Woodruff Foundation:
The Bob Woodruff Foundation (BWF) is the nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring injured service members and their families are thriving long after they return home. A national organization with grassroots reach, the Bob Woodruff Foundation complements the work of the federal government —diligently navigating the maze of more than 46,000 nonprofits providing services to veterans—finds, funds and shapes innovative programs, and holds them accountable for results. To date, BWF has invested nearly $30 million in public education and solutions, reaching more than 2 million service members, support personnel, veterans and their families. The Bob Woodruff Foundation was co-founded in 2006 by award-winning anchor Bob Woodruff and his family, whose own experiences inspired them to help make sure the nation’s heroes have access to the high level of support and resources they deserve, for as long as they need it. For more information about the Bob Woodruff Foundation, please visit bobwoodrufffoundation.org or on Facebook and Twitter at @Stand4Heroes.