We begin our work with some very influential partners: some of the most prominent Head Football Coaches in the Midwest and a group of equally prestigious Letterwinners Associations and similar organizations.
As a result, we are uniquely positioned to both dramatically increase public awareness of and raise substantial new funds for existing non-profit organizations that work to end veteran homelessness in our region.
Accordingly, we will provide a new and high-profile regional “face” to their work, seeking to engage new supporters throughout the Midwest to join them in this fight to end veteran homelessness.
We will do so by reaching throughout the region to individuals, corporations, charitable foundations and service providers not currently involved in the battle. We will also develop grassroots movements in each state.
We will serve as a clearing house for the new funds that we raise, distributing them to non-profit organizations that either work to prevent veteran homelessness or that will provide new emergency, transitional or permanent beds for vets in need in our region.
We will do so by meeting the highest possible industry standards of efficiency, transparency and accountability.
We take our inspiration from two sources, the first being a frail, elderly school teacher from Rheims, France. On a cold winter day in 1839, disturbed by her nation’s homeless crisis and appalled at the number of homeless beggars she passed each day, Jeanne Jugan decided to do something about it.
Despite her age and slender build, Jeanne simply picked up a blind, paralyzed homeless woman and carried her home to Jeanne’s small apartment. Exhausted from climbing the rickety, narrow stairs to the second floor space, she placed the woman in her own (and only) bed and began to tend to her needs.
With no extra money to feed the woman, Jeanne took a “begging basket” door to door, asking her friends and neighbors to help provide for her previously homeless charge.
Thus began the heroic work of The Little Sisters of The Poor.
Our second inspiration is the anonymous (by choice) hero who saved the life of badly wounded Wisconsin native and future Pittsburgh Steelers star Rocky Bleier after their unit was ambushed in a Vietnamese swamp. Carrying his semi-conscious brother-in-arms on his back, he and Rocky made slow and easy targets as enemy snipers harassed their retreat.
As the bullets ripped through the air around him, every bone in his body must have told that soldier to drop his half-dead burden and run.
But he didn’t.
He was an American soldier, and had answered a sacred calling.
The unique and most fundamental premise of that calling is that we simply do not leave our wounded behind.
So this great African-American hero quietly risked his life to carry a barely-breathing white soldier through a sea of clinging vines and boot-swallowing mud to safety.
This is America, the greatest nation on the face of this earth.
That is how we do things here.