The Embassy of the State of Qatar Announces a $5 Million Gift to the Bob Woodruff Foundation
Foundation to invest in organizations that serve veterans recovering from recent Natural disasters in Tampa Bay and Southwest Florida
The Bob Woodruff Foundation (BWF) has received a $5 million donation from longtime partner, the Embassy of the State of Qatar. Through December 2024, the Foundation will invest the funds in organizations that are helping Florida veterans rebuild from recent natural disasters, including those who were impacted when Hurricane Ian devastated many parts of the state one year ago this week.
In the final quarter of 2023, a total of $1.26 million will be invested in the following organizations supporting veterans in Tampa Bay and Southwest Florida:
- Boley Centers, Inc. will improve the stability of at least 80 veteran households in counties impacted by Hurricane Ian by providing financial assistance for transportation, utilities, food, employment, and housing.
- Home Base, A Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Program will provide peer-to-peer community outreach and evidence-based mental health care to improve the mental health and well-being of at least 60 veterans and families who were in counties impacted by Hurricane Ian.
- Homeless Empowerment Program will provide rental assistance and community-based case management to at least 75 veterans in counties impacted by Hurricane Ian to help them obtain and maintain permanent housing. BWF-Qatar funding will also support a fixed-route shuttle service to the C.W. Bill Young Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center for Veterans experiencing homelessness in Pinellas County, providing veterans with timely, reliable access to mental health, substance abuse, and physical health care.
- Rutgers University Foundation’s Vets4Warriors will provide peer support and connection to services for at least 500 veterans and families in counties impacted by Hurricane Ian, improving their quality of life.
- St. Vincent de Paul (SVdP) CARES will provide emergency shelter for at least 18 veterans experiencing homelessness in Hillsborough County. This funding will also complement SVdP CARES’ federal funding, enabling them to provide transportation, utilities, food, employment, and housing assistance to a minimum of 46 veterans in counties impacted by Hurricane Ian, improving their household stability.
- Volunteers of America of Florida will ensure that at least 100 veterans in counties impacted by Hurricane Ian receive assistance to improve their household stability. VOAFL will reach veterans in Charlotte, Manatee, Highlands, Hillsborough, and Brevard Counties.
In 2024, the Foundation will invest remaining funds from the Embassy of the State of Qatar for natural disaster relief funding in programs and services for veterans across more than 25 counties most heavily impacted by Hurricane Ian in Florida. Nonprofit organizations can apply for funding here: https://bobwoodrufffoundation.org/grants/
“The Bob Woodruff Foundation has been on the forefront of disaster relief for veterans, mobilizing millions in relief efforts following Hurricane Harvey in Houston, the COVID-19 pandemic and Hurricane Ian last year,” said Anne Marie Dougherty, Chief Executive Officer of the Bob Woodruff Foundation. “In partnership with the Embassy of the State of Qatar, we’re committed to continuing this work by supporting long-term hurricane recovery throughout the region and positively impacting those who have honorably served our nation.”
“The people of west Florida are resilient, particularly military veterans,” said Sheikh Meshal bin Hamad Al-Thani, Ambassador of the State of Qatar to the U.S. “The progress toward recovery that has already been made since Hurricane Ian is remarkable. But as those whose lives have been changed dramatically by the storm know all too well, full recovery from a disaster of that magnitude takes time and long-term resources. Qatar is always ready to come to the aid of our American friends in times of need. The Bob Woodruff Foundation, with which we have worked on a range of programs over the years, has extraordinary experience doing the difficult, important work necessary to achieve real, lasting recovery. We are honored to partner with them again, and to support our friends in Florida.”
Additionally, in September, the Foundation organized facility improvement activities at the Boley Centers in St. Petersburg and the Homeless Empowerment Program in Clearwater. Projects include painting and installing shelving, flooring, lighting, plumbing and furnishings.
As the nation’s leading nonprofit for veterans, BWF has been instrumental in addressing the most pressing issues facing veterans and military families across the country. The Foundation is committed to ensuring long-term support in Florida – home to the third largest veteran population – investing nearly $1 million in 15 partner organizations across the state since 2020. These partners range in the portfolio of services they provide to veterans, service members and their families including emergency financial assistance, legal services and housing support.
About the Bob Woodruff Foundation
The Bob Woodruff Foundation was founded in 2006 after reporter Bob Woodruff was wounded by a roadside bomb while covering the war in Iraq. Since then, the Bob Woodruff Foundation has raised awareness about the tough challenges veterans and military families are facing, and invested in solutions to help support them in the next chapter of their lives. To date, the Bob Woodruff Foundation has invested over $146 million to ensure that our nation’s veterans, service members and their families — those who stood for us — have stable and successful futures.
About the Qatar-US Partnership
The United States established diplomatic relations with Qatar in 1972. The relationship has flourished in the subsequent 50 years, and today, the countries cooperate closely on a wide range of regional and global issues and enjoy deep commercial, educational, and cultural ties. In defense, Qatar and the US collaborate financially, politically, and militarily to work toward stability and prosperity for the region, with US President Joe Biden naming Qatar a Major Non-NATO Ally in 2022, one of just 18 countries globally with that designation. Qatar is home to Al-Udeid Air Base, where it has hosted US Central Command Forward Headquarters and a large US military contingent for decades. Qatar has also routinely come to the assistance of Americans in difficult times by donating to U.S. communities to support efforts to recover from natural disasters, including in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Harvey, and during the COVID-19 pandemic.