Memorial Day: Nonprofit Organizations to Support
Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for mourning the U.S. military personnel who have died while serving in the United States armed forces. It is observed on the last Monday of May.
Memorial Day is a day to remember and honor the sacrifices of those who have died in service to their country. It is a time to reflect on the cost of war and to appreciate the freedoms that we enjoy because of the brave men and women who have fought and died for our country.
There are many ways to observe Memorial Day. Some people visit cemeteries or memorials to pay their respects to the dead. Others participate in parades or other public events. Many people also take the day off from work and spend time with their families and friends.
This list of nonprofit organizations helps veterans and their families:
Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) is a nonprofit organization that provides compassionate care to all those grieving the death of a military loved one. TAPS offers peer support, grief counseling, casework assistance, grief education, and a variety of other programs and services.
TAPS was founded in 1994 by Bonnie Carroll, who lost her husband, Air Force Colonel Bruce Carroll, in the crash of an Air Force C-130 aircraft in 1991. Carroll was inspired to start TAPS after she realized that there was no one place for families of fallen service members to turn for support.
TAPS is a national organization with over 20 chapters across the United States. TAPS also has a presence in Europe and Asia. TAPS provides services to all those grieving the death of a military loved one, regardless of the cause of death or the relationship to the service member.
TAPS's programs and services are provided free of charge to all survivors. TAPS is funded by private donations and does not receive any government funding.
Here are some of the programs and services that TAPS offers:
- Peer support: TAPS offers a peer support program that connects survivors with other people who have lost a loved one in the military. Peer support groups are led by trained volunteers who have been through similar experiences.
- Grief counseling: TAPS offers grief counseling services to help survivors cope with their grief. Grief counseling is provided by licensed therapists who specialize in grief and loss.
- Casework assistance: TAPS offers casework assistance to help survivors navigate the complex world of government benefits and entitlements. Caseworkers can help survivors apply for benefits, file claims, and understand their rights.
- Grief education: TAPS offers grief education programs to help survivors learn about the grieving process and how to cope with their grief. Grief education programs are offered in person and online.
- A variety of other programs and services:
- A national helpline
- A website with resources for survivors
- A library of books and articles about grief and loss
- A retreat program for survivors
- A scholarship program for children of fallen service members
The organization is a vital resource for families of fallen service members. TAPS provides compassionate care and support to help families cope with their grief and rebuild their lives.
The Global War on Terrorism Memorial Foundation is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to planning, funding, designing, and building the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The GWOT Memorial will be a lasting tribute to the courage and sacrifice of all who have served — especially those who have made the ultimate sacrifice — in the nation's longest ongoing conflict to protect our country.
The Foundation is working to raise the necessary funds to build the memorial. The estimated cost of the project is $200 million. The Foundation is also working to secure a location for the memorial on the National Mall.
Here are some of the things that the Global War on Terrorism Memorial Foundation is doing to honor the service and sacrifice of all those who have served in the GWOT:
- Planning, funding, designing, and building the Global War on Terrorism Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.
- Raising awareness of the GWOT and the sacrifices made by those who have served
- Providing support to veterans and their families
- Advocating for policies that support veterans
- Educating the public about the GWOT
The Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides college scholarships and educational counseling to military children who have lost a parent in the line of duty. The organization was founded in 2002 by the parents of fallen soldiers who wanted to ensure that the children of these heroes would have the opportunity to pursue a college education.
The Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation has provided over $65 million in scholarships to over 2,800 children of fallen service members since its inception. The organization also provides educational counseling and other support services to help these children succeed in college and beyond.
Here are some of the things that the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation does to help the children of fallen service members:
- Provides college scholarships
- Provides educational counseling
- Provides other support services
- Helps children connect with other children who have lost a parent in the line of duty
- Provides resources to help children cope with their loss
- Advocates for policies that support children of fallen service members
The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund (IFHF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides support to the men and women of the United States Armed Forces and their families. The organization was founded in 2000 by philanthropist Zachary Fisher and his wife, Gigi.
IFHF provides a variety of services to service members and their families, including:
- Financial assistance to help with medical expenses, housing, and other needs
- Support for families of fallen service members
- Educational scholarships for children of fallen service members
- Construction of state-of-the-art treatment centers for service members with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
IFHF has provided over $200 million in support to service members and their families since its inception. The organization has also built three Intrepid Spirit Centers, which provide specialized care for service members with TBI and PTSD.
Here are some of the things that the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund does to support the men and women of the United States Armed Forces and their families:
- Provides financial assistance
- Provides support for families of fallen service members
- Provides educational scholarships
- Builds state-of-the-art treatment centers
- Advocates for policies that support service members and their families
The Navy SEAL Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides critical support to the warriors, veterans, and families of Naval Special Warfare.
The Foundation was founded in 1998 by former Navy SEALs and their families who wanted to ensure that the men and women of Naval Special Warfare (NSW) and their families had the support they needed to succeed.
The Foundation provides a variety of programs and services to NSW warriors, veterans, and families, including:
- Financial assistance for medical expenses, housing, and other needs
- Educational scholarships
- Family support programs
- Wellness and resiliency programs
- Transition assistance programs
- Advocacy for NSW warriors and their families
The Navy SEAL Foundation has provided over $100 million in support to NSW warriors, veterans, and families since its inception. The organization has also built two Navy SEAL & SWCC Memorials, one at the National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, Florida, and one at the Navy Special Warfare Center and School in Coronado, California.
Here are some of the things that the Navy SEAL Foundation does to support the warriors, veterans, and families of Naval Special Warfare:
- Provides financial assistance
- Provides educational scholarships
- Provides family support programs
- Provides wellness and resiliency programs
- Provides transition assistance programs
- Advocates for NSW warriors and their families
The Folded Flag Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in the United States that provides educational scholarships and support grants to the spouses and children of military personnel who have been killed or disabled in the line of duty.
The organization was founded in 2014 with the mission of honoring the sacrifices of military families by providing them with financial assistance to pursue their educational goals. The Folded Flag Foundation believes that education is a critical tool for helping military families to build a brighter future, and they work to ensure that the children and spouses of fallen or disabled service members have access to the resources they need to succeed.
Since its founding, the Folded Flag Foundation has awarded millions of dollars in scholarships and grants to military families across the United States. Their impact has been significant, providing educational opportunities to those who might not have had access to them otherwise and helping to ease the financial burden on families who have already sacrificed so much.
Angels of America's Fallen (AoAF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides support to the children of fallen military and first responders. The organization was founded in 2005 by two mothers who lost their husbands in the Iraq War. AoAF's mission is to "help children of our fallen military and first responders develop into strong and successful adults by providing them positive mentoring and developmental activities at their most crucial developmental phase of life."
AoAF provides a variety of programs and services to children of fallen heroes, including:
- Financial assistance for sports, music, and art activities
- Mentoring and counseling
- Scholarships for college and trade school
- Networking opportunities
- Social events
AoAF is committed to providing comprehensive support to children of fallen heroes. The organization believes that these children deserve the opportunity to thrive, despite the loss of their parents. AoAF is working to make sure that these children have the resources they need to succeed in school, in their careers, and in life.
America's Gold Star Families (AGSFO) is a nonprofit organization that provides support to the families of fallen U.S. service members. The organization was founded in 2008 by a group of Gold Star families who wanted to create a space where they could come together to grieve, heal, and support each other.
AGSFO offers a variety of programs and services to Gold Star families, including:
- Bereavement support groups
- Individual counseling
- Financial assistance
- Educational scholarships
- Social events
AGSFO is committed to providing comprehensive support to Gold Star families. The organization believes that these families deserve the opportunity to heal and thrive, despite the loss of their loved ones. AGSFO is working to make sure that these families have the resources they need to cope with their grief, rebuild their lives, and honor the memory of their fallen loved ones.
Here are some additional information about AGSFO:
- The organization has served over 10,000 Gold Star families since its founding.
- AGSFO has a team of over 50 staff members and volunteers.
- The organization is governed by a board of directors made up of Gold Star family members and other community leaders.
- AGSFO is a member of the Gold Star Families of America, a national organization that supports the families of fallen U.S. service members.
The Wingman Foundation is a nonprofit organization that provides immediate post-mishap support for the Navy and Marine Corps Aviation community and their families. The organization was founded in 2014 by three Active Duty Marine Corps aviators who saw firsthand the need for a support network for families affected by aviation mishaps.
The Wingman Foundation provides a variety of services to families affected by aviation mishaps, including:
- Financial assistance for funeral, travel, and lodging costs
- Emotional support and counseling
- Assistance with navigating the military bureaucracy
- Memorial services and tributes
- Scholarships for children of fallen heroes
The Wingman Foundation is committed to providing comprehensive support to families affected by aviation mishaps. The organization believes that these families deserve the opportunity to heal and thrive, despite the loss of their loved one. The Wingman Foundation is working to make sure that these families have the resources they need to cope with their grief, to rebuild their lives, and to honor the memory of their fallen loved ones.
Here are some additional information about the Wingman Foundation:
- The organization has served over 1,000 families since its founding.
- The Wingman Foundation has a team of over 20 staff members and volunteers.
- The organization is governed by a board of directors made up of aviation professionals, family members of fallen heroes, and other community leaders.
- The Wingman Foundation is a member of the National Military Family Association, a national organization that supports military families.
Groundswell is a workplace giving program built for modern businesses. It gives organizations the infrastructure and tools to make it easy to empower employees to support the causes they care about during moments that matter most.
Unlocking Philanthropy: A Ready-to-Use Corporate Giving Policy for Modern Businesses
Sample Corporate Giving Policy You Can Use Today
In today’s socially conscious environment, more companies than ever are recognizing the value of corporate philanthropy. Not only can a robust giving policy boost a brand’s image and reputation, but it can also play a pivotal role in community development and global betterment. If your company is considering the establishment of a formal corporate giving policy or refining its existing strategy, this sample policy might be the perfect starting point for you.
Pillars of a Strong Corporate Giving Policy
Corporate giving programs range from employer donation matching programs to full blown corporate social responsibility programs with grantmaking and volunteerism. Many companies find somewhere in the middle that aligns with their size, budget, geographic presence and most importantly company values and commitment to diversity and inclusion. But what truly makes a corporate giving policy stand out? Let’s delve into the key features, from donation matching to the strategic use of platforms like Groundswell.
1. Donation Matching: Doubling the Impact
One of the most effective tools in a giving policy is donation matching. This is where companies match employee donations to eligible non-profits, effectively doubling the contribution. Such programs not only amplify the impact but also motivate employees to participate, knowing their chosen cause will receive twice the support.
2. Charitable Stipends: Encouraging Employee Choice
Charitable stipends are allowances given to employees to donate to a non-profit of their choice. This not only encourages a culture of giving but also empowers employees to support causes they’re passionate about. The stipends can be a fixed amount annually or can vary based on the employee’s role or tenure.
3. Dollars for Doers: Volunteering Translated to Contributions
“Dollars for Doers” programs convert volunteer hours into monetary donations. When employees volunteer their time for a cause, the company makes a donation equivalent to the hours spent. This fosters a culture of hands-on involvement and ensures that both time and money are being donated to valuable initiatives.
4. Corporate Grants: Sowing Seeds for Bigger Change
Beyond individual employee contributions, companies can set aside a dedicated fund for corporate grants. These grants can be given to non-profits, research initiatives, or community projects that align with the company’s CSR objectives. Such grants can lead to substantial, long-term changes and foster strong partnerships with community leaders and organizations.
Why Choose Groundswell for Your Giving Initiatives?
Incorporating these elements into a giving policy requires streamlined management, transparency, and ease of execution. This is where platforms like Groundswell come into the picture.
Groundswell offers an efficient and affordable solution for companies aiming to elevate their philanthropic endeavors. Here’s why it’s the ideal choice:
- User-Friendly Interface: Groundswell’s platform is designed for both companies and employees, ensuring smooth navigation and straightforward donation processes.
- Versatility: Whether it’s donation matching, handling charitable stipends, or managing corporate grants, Groundswell offers solutions tailored to each company’s unique needs.
- Cost-Effective: Groundswell provides a comprehensive suite of tools at competitive prices, ensuring that more of your money goes towards the cause rather than platform fees.
- Transparency: Track donations, monitor employee involvement, and generate detailed reports to measure the impact—all in one place.
An effective corporate giving policy is a blend of structure, employee engagement, and impactful contributions. By incorporating elements like donation matching, charitable stipends, “Dollars for Doers,” and corporate grants, businesses can create a ripple effect of positive change. And with platforms like Groundswell, executing these initiatives becomes not just feasible but also highly efficient and cost-effective.
5 Tips to Boost Engagement & Impact on Giving Tuesday
Leverage GivingTuesday to boost generosity
Every November, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving is known as GivingTuesday, which often serves as the unofficial start of end-of-year giving campaigns. This comes on the heels of holiday shopping deals on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. It is a worldwide phenomenon, inspiring millions to lean into the end-of-year holiday spirit with generosity and compassion. For many charities, GivingTuesday has become their biggest day for donations – and can help resource their ability to have an even greater impact in the year ahead.
For companies, GivingTuesday and the end-of-year giving season offers an opportunity to double down on their commitment to social responsibility, strengthen relationships with employees, and boost their impact in the community and broader world.
At Groundswell, we partner with companies all across the country to design and launch GivingTuesday campaigns – leveraging our easy-to-use platform that makes it easy for employees to participate and send donations to the causes and charities that they care most about. Below are some best practices to boost engagement and inspire generosity during the giving season.
1. Make Giving Easy:
A lot of giving platforms out there make it incredibly hard to donate. Some don’t have all 1.5 million IRS-approved charities listed. Others require employees to navigate through a web of intranet or sharepoint sites to find the giving program landing page. And others require that HR is notified of any donations an employee wants to make. At Groundswell – we are committed to removing all of the friction, and ensuring that employees can find charities easily, through a platform that is accessible from the palm of their hand, so they can give whenever they want to.
2. Launch a GivingTuesday Match Campaign:
Through Groundswell you can customize and launch a special GivingTuesday match campaign in a matter of minutes. Simply pick the nonprofits to include in the special campaign, select the start and end-date for the campaign, and then determine the match – 2x, 3x – along with any overall budget limits, then you’re done!
3. Boost engagement by involving ERGs:
Share nonprofit recommendations from Employee Resource Groups to provide inspiration around causes and nonprofits that matter to your employees. You can feature these nonprofits on dedicated ERG Corporate Spotlights and Campaigns that will be visible to all employees on their Groundswell dashboard.
4. Surprise (and Delight) Employees With A Gift to Give:
Consider sending a surprise “gift to give” to reward those already participating in your giving program (and to incentivize others to enroll). These gifts might be used to further maximize impact through the existing campaign, or to donate to other nonprofits your employees care about. Groundswell’s custom gift feature allows companies to easily schedule and send gifts with little to no administrative burden.
5. Level up with Volunteer Matching:
Groundswell’s Volunteer Matching program – sometimes known as Dollars for Doers – recognizes that some employees may not have funds to contribute, but have time – and rewards them in the same way. It’s an inclusive approach that invites everyone to participate in GivingTuesday, even those who may not be able to donate their own funds.
12 Employee Benefits Survey Questions Modern Companies Should Ask
In today's business environment, having the right and highest performing talent is more critical than ever. With benefits packages playing a vital role in these decisions, how can companies truly gauge their effectiveness? By initiating regular employee benefits surveys.
Scroll down for a free survey template below.
Let's dive in to the importance of asking the following questions.
Is our workforce satisfied with the current employee benefits package?
Gaining insights from "how satisfied are you with our company’s benefits package?" can offer companies a quick pulse on the effectiveness of their benefits. A dip in satisfaction might signal a need for re-evaluation, especially if you're looking to maximize your budget.
How comprehensive are the employee benefits we offer?
Do employees feel that the organization covers a wide range of their needs? Asking, "do you feel our benefits package is comprehensive in its offering?" can shed light on any potential gaps in coverage.
Are we showing true commitment to Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion through our benefits?
Are the company's efforts in promoting DE&I resonating? This can be gauged by asking if the benefits genuinely support diversity and inclusion. If they aren't, here's an opportunity to collect ideas directly from your employees.
Read more about how to make sure your giving program is equitable and inclusive.
Do our benefits reflect our company culture and values?
The question, "do you feel our benefits package supports our cultural values?" will highlight any potential discrepancies in practicing what you're preaching.
Are we catering to the needs of a remote or multi-location workforce?
With remote work on the rise, is the company adapting its benefits accordingly? It's essential to find out if employees feel supported, regardless of their work setting.
Would employees recommend the company based on our benefits?
This is an easy one to skip, but it's a great question to ask. See how influential your benefits package is for employee referrals. Determining if employees would advocate for the company based on its benefits can be a key metric for recruitment.
How do specific benefit categories fare?
By querying satisfaction levels across various benefits – physical health, social impact, mental health, financial health, and fringe benefits – can companies discern which areas are thriving and which need enhancement?
What additional benefits do employees desire?
Is there a particular benefit that could make a difference in employee satisfaction and retention? Discovering this can be as straightforward as asking, "if you could choose one benefit not currently offered, what would it be?"
If your workforce desires a more meaningful benefit, see why decentralizing your corporate philanthropy strategy can achieve greater impact at scale.
How often should I send an employee survey about our benefits?
While every business has their own set of unique needs, conducing a quarterly employee survey at minimum can help you get a pulse check.
There will be some natural and unplanned peaks in valleys throughout the year that can drastically affect employee morale and company culture. By proactively seeking feedback through surveys, companies can foster a culture of continuous improvement, ensuring they remain at the forefront of employee satisfaction.
What are some affordable benefit options we can provide employees?
Corporate matching or giving programs can be a low-cost addition to your benefit offering that supports your employees’ unique passions and perspectives through charitable giving and boosts your company’s commitment to social impact. Groundswell offers a comprehensive solution with a simple implementation and nearly zero administration burden.
- How satisfied are you with our company’s benefits package?
- Do you feel our benefits package is comprehensive in its offering?
- Do you feel our benefits package supports our cultural values?
- Do you feel our benefits package supports our commitment to Diversity & Inclusion?
- Do you feel our benefits package supports our remote or multi-location workforce?
- How likely are you to recommend applying based on our benefits package?
- How satisfied are you with our physical health benefits (i.e. health care, sick leave, etc)?
- How satisfied are you with our social impact benefits (i.e. corporate matching, volunteering, etc)?
- How satisfied are you with our mental health benefits (i.e. vacation time, EAP, etc)?
- How satisfied are you with our financial health benefits? (i.e. retirement, student loan assistance, etc)
- How satisfied are you with our fringe benefits and perks? (i.e. fitness subsidies, stipends, etc)
- If you could choose one benefit not currently offered, what would it be?