Pasadena, CA November 3, 2009 – Members of Soldiers’ Angels’ volunteer leadership have raised the stakes on this year’s online Valour-IT Veterans Day fundraising competition, which helps provide America’s wounded soldiers with voice-controlled laptops and other technology that supports their physical and psychological recovery.
Divided among four “virtual teams,” a wide variety of bloggers and other New Media mavens have been competing online since October 26 to inspire the most donations to help wounded troops by Veterans Day, November 11. If the teams of online fundraisers can blast through their collective goal of $140,000 and bring in an additional $100,000 in donations, founder Patti Patton-Bader and National Communications Director Shelle Michaels have promised to shave their heads in honor of the achievement.
In just over four years, Project Valour-IT has given 4,100 voice-controlled laptops to severely wounded Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines, and has supplied additional items that may be a surprising fit in a recovery regimen--Wii game systems and handheld GPS devices.
“This project changes lives,” says Patton-Bader. “Wounded heroes say that being able to use a laptop helps them feel whole again. Physical therapists are actually designing therapy sessions around Wii Sports! And something as normal as a handheld GPS reduces stress and helps a hero cope. With all that this project can do for our heroes, I’m happy to shave my head if it will motivate donations!”
Each of the devices Valour-IT supplies helps restore confidence and independence. Voice-activated laptops reconnect the wounded with the world and develop self-confidence by showing soldiers they can continue to be engaged and productive despite their injuries. Physical therapists report Wii Sports and similar programs are extremely beneficial when used in physical therapy settings. Wounded personnel with short-term memory loss due to TBI and severe PTSD use GPS systems to keep from getting disoriented when they move on to more independent living.
Details of the current fundraising competition are available at www.soldiersangels.org and www.valour-it.blogspot.com. Donations can be made online at Soldiers' Angels, or by sending checks or money orders to Soldiers' Angels, Valour-IT Fund, 1792 E. Washington Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91104.
Established in 2003, Soldiers' Angels is a volunteer-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit providing aid and comfort to the United States Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard, veterans and military families. For more information, www.soldiersangels.org or 623-570-3903. Tax ID# 20-0583415