At Veterans First, our community service efforts support existing charities and nonprofit organizations, as well as our own programs for assisting our country’s Veterans. We’ve found the most powerful initiatives to be those which give us an opportunity to engage personally with active duty servicemembers, Veterans, and their families.
Additionally, we are committed to providing hands-on support and financial education to aid any servicemember’s transition to civilian life. Giving our time and resources is as rewarding for our employees as it is for those we’re honored to help.
Service Paws and Patriots
Veterans First Mortgage is a committed supporter and sponsor of The Malinois Foundation, which provides hope and recovery through canine assistance. With a mission to “provide service dog training to Veterans and Americans in need with both physical and/or mental impairments,” the foundation works with individuals and families to train and place service animals to meet the needs of disabled Veterans. In 2017, Veterans First and Mark Miller Subaru worked with the foundation to help place Tink, a two-year-old Goldendoodle trained as a psychiatric and mobility service dog, with U.S. Army Veteran Christine M. of Salt Lake City, Utah. And in 2018, employees in San Diego and Salt Lake City held two community-focused fundraisers to again support the “Service Paws for Patriots” program. To date, thousands of dollars have been donated by Veteran First employees and families to support this outstanding cause.
Veterans Family Gift Shop
The Veterans Family Gift Shop, located at the VA’s George E. Wahlen VA Medical Center, is a favorite holiday giving initiative for the employees of Veterans First. The shop provides holiday gifts for needy Veterans and their families. Each holiday season, children and Veterans are able to pick out popular electronic devices, clothes, toys, and many other items that they wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford.
Serving Dinner at the Fisher House
Veterans First employees routinely have the opportunity to serve dinners for the Fisher House Foundation, a charity that builds and supports 76 comfort houses on 24 installations and 32 VA medical centers around the world. These homes are meant to be supportive, relaxing environments where military and Veteran families can stay free of charge while a loved one is in the hospital. Our staff members serve dinners at Fisher Houses in Salt Lake City, Utah, and San Diego, California. We’ve found providing meals and sitting down to tell and hear stories to be a great way to warm hearts and bellies, while loved ones are healing.
Care Packages for U.S. Troops
Operation Outreach is a care package initiative supported by Veterans First employee donations. These packages filled with toiletries, sundries, and treats are sent to U.S. troops overseas. Since the program started, Veterans First has sent approximately 1,000 packages containing the most requested items to Iraq and Afghanistan.
Veterans First Mortgage passionately advocates for Veterans with PTSD, supporting them through education and partnerships with national charities. One such effort is a fireworks education program. Started by Military with PTSD -- a nonprofit organization committed to strengthening military and Veteran families through peer support, community education, and special events -- the “An Explosion of Kindness” campaign is intended to educate the general public on the effects of fireworks on Veterans. To support this initiative, we’ve created special flyers, held events, and designed and printed yard signs that inform Veterans and those affected by PTSD that fireworks will be used to mark special occasions like weddings and holidays. Such a sign design, available for free download, can be found on our Pinterest page.