Harrisburg, Pa. – Governor Tom Wolf announced today that 13 Pennsylvania counties’ veterans’ affairs offices will receive $150,000 in grants and 18 charitable or veteran service organizations will receive $650,000 in grants from the Veterans’ Trust Fund (VTF), which is administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA).
The VTF is funded by generous Pennsylvanians who voluntarily make a $3 donation when applying for or renewing their driver’s license or photo ID and also renewing a motor vehicle registration. Additionally, proceeds come from the sale of the Honoring Our Veterans license plate and private donations. Since the grant program began in 2013, a total of $2,832,860 has been awarded to organizations that serve Pennsylvania veterans.
“The citizens of Pennsylvania continue to show how much they value our veterans through their willingness to voluntarily donate to the Veterans’ Trust Fund,” said Gov. Tom Wolf. “Their generosity helps to support programs and services that positively impact the lives of veterans and their families.”
Grantees slated to receive funding identified $520,193 in matching funds pledged toward grant-funded initiatives. Combined with the VTF grants, this will result in more than $1.3 million for veterans’ initiatives during the next two years.
“I have been fortunate to see firsthand how these organizations that were selected for VTF grants provide critical support to our most needy veterans,” said Maj. Gen. Tony Carrelli, Pennsylvania’s adjutant general and head of the DMVA. “They are tremendous partners in our communities, working tirelessly to provide programs and services that benefit PA veterans.”
Up to a total of $150,000 in grant funding was available for new, innovative or expanded programs or services provided by county directors of veterans affairs or the Pennsylvania Association of County Directors of Veterans Affairs. The two areas of emphasis for grantees in this category were veterans’ outreach and veterans’ courts. The grantees are:
- Bedford County Office of Veterans Affairs: $5,767 for veterans’ outreach equipment
- Cambria County Office of Veterans Affairs: $15,000 to support veterans’ court services
- Clarion County Office of Veterans Affairs: $8,500 for veterans’ outreach equipment
- Clinton County Office of Veterans Affairs: $5,000 for veterans’ outreach equipment
- Fayette County Office of Veterans Affairs: $14,710 to expand veterans’ outreach
- Franklin County Office of Veterans Affairs: $13,583 to support service dogs for veterans
- Juniata County and Mifflin County Offices of Veterans Affairs (joint application): $26,000 for veterans’ outreach
- Lackawanna County Office of Veterans Affairs: $20,000 toward its veterans’ court
- Lehigh County Office of Veterans Affairs: $10,190 for mental health first aid training
- Montgomery County Office of Veterans Affairs: $15,000 for its transportation program
- Potter County Office of Veterans Affairs: $11,250 for veterans’ outreach events
- Warren County Office of Veterans Affairs: $5,000 for veterans’ outreach events
The VTF grant also identified up to a total of $650,000 in funding available to veteran service organizations and 501(c)(3) charitable organizations with a mission of serving Pennsylvania veterans. Funding priorities for grants in this category were veterans’ programs focused on transitional housing/community living, unique veteran health services or other programs addressing newly identified, unmet or emerging needs of veterans and their families.
Grants are being awarded to:
- American Legion Post 210, Doylestown (Bucks County): $7,500 for veteran outreach events
- Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, Harrisburg (Dauphin County): $50,000 for its MilitaryShare program
- Community Hope, d/b/a Hope for Veterans, Allentown (Lehigh County): $50,000 to provide low-income veterans and their families with financial assistance
- David’s Drive 831, Coatesville (Chester County): $15,000 for financial assistance to veterans in need
- Dog T.A.G.S., Mechanicsburg (Cumberland County): $49,325 for service dogs to veterans
- Meghan Shortt Wilent Foundation, North Wales (Montgomery County): $11,175 for therapeutic services to veterans with post-traumatic stress and/or traumatic brain injuries
- Military Assistance Project, Philadelphia (Philadelphia County): $20,000 to provide free legal services to veterans
- Operation Touch of Home, Brodheadsville (Monroe County): $25,000 for essential care packages and emergency financial assistance to veterans in need
- Pennsylvania Wounded Warriors, Camp Hill (Cumberland County): $45,000 for emergency financial assistance to veterans in need
- Safe Harbor Easton, Easton (Northampton County): $40,000 to provide housing services to homeless female veterans
- Second Harvest Food Bank, Erie (Erie County): $50,000 for its MilitaryShare program
- Travelers Aid Society, Pittsburgh (Allegheny County): $50,000 to provide transportation assistance to veterans
- Veteran Community Initiatives, Johnstown (Cambria County): $50,000 for its Operation Family Caregiver Program, supporting post-9/11 service members and their families
- Veterans Leadership Program of Western PA, Pittsburgh (Allegheny County): $50,000 for its Heroes Matter program, providing emergency assistance to homeless veterans
- Veterans Multi-Service Center, Philadelphia (Philadelphia County): $25,000 for its women veterans’ program
- Veteran’s Helping Hand, York (York County): $32,000 to provide emergency assistance to veterans in need
- Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 364, Johnstown (Cambria County): $30,000 to assist and educate veterans on mental health issues
- Volunteers of America of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg (Dauphin County): $50,000 to support homeless veterans’ reintegration back into society
All grant awards are contingent upon the completion of a fully executed grant agreement.
The Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs is authorized to solicit and accept donations to the VTF on behalf of the commonwealth. Tax-deductible donations can be made online at www.donate.dmva.pa.gov or mailed to: PA Veterans’ Trust Fund, Bldg. 0-47 Fort Indiantown Gap, Annville, PA 17003.