Letter to the Editor: Support Legitimate Veterans Organizations

Aaron Rosloff, Kendall Park.

In today's mail I received a solicitation from an organization calling themselves American Veterans Support Foundation. It is a beautiful and appealing letter and I was tempted to write a check, but as it was new to me I called the New Jersey Attorney General's office.

It turns out that they are a legal organization, but although they comply with the law by reporting to the state, in fact they are in business for themselves. According to the attorney general's office, they collected $4.3 million dollars last year.  They claim 86 percent for expenses and only 14 percent goes toward helping veterans.

I would encourage everyone to support legitimate veterans organizations who do wonderful work for deserving veterans, but be sure that the organizations are not just complying with the law, but in fact working for the benefit of needy veterans.

When in doubt call the AG's office at 973-504-6215. They will welcome your call.

--Aaron Rosloff, Kendall Park.

Cati October 10, 2012 at 08:02 PM
Thanks for this info! I live in Colorado and received a letter, too, from the same company with a WI address. That is really unfortunate they're making so much and doing so little with it. I'll definitely find a better organization.
Stacy October 19, 2012 at 08:23 PM
I also live in CO. I received a telephone solicitation from Residential Programs, Inc., who was soliciting for American Veterans Support Foundation, which is a special program of the National Vietnam Veterans Foundation [which is the 501(C)(3) non-profit organization]. It sounded good--providing food for Veterans (they stated later for Vietnam Vets). I said okay--I was then pressured to give them a confirmed amount to pay. I finally gave them a number. A few days later I got the pledge letter. Now having the opportunity to do some research about this, because after thinking about how pressured I felt from the phone call, I also felt the "mission" was hugely suspect I've been doing some research. I found this information on the Secretary of States website: http://www.sos.state.co.us/ccsa/ViewSummary.do?ceId=102055 I also went to BBB and found a bit of information for National Vietnam Veterans Foundation--they hadn't returned any information to the BBB, very suspicious. Going to Nat'l Viet Vets Foundation website, extremely incomplete, dead links, mentioned one part of their mission was to offer scholarships to dependent children of Vietnam KIA military. Looking around for the scholarships (as I am a dependent child of a KIA Air Force Pilot), nothing about any such program. All I could see was they provided 1,400 phone calling cards-with 72 minutes of time--to a person who was in a vet hospital. I'd say stay away--very far away-from them
Goowedo Sanchez February 02, 2013 at 05:33 PM
Deja Vue all over again, exactly the same as described above happened to me. I'm enclosing a print out of this forum in the pledge envelope.
peggy davis February 11, 2013 at 07:33 PM
My aunt recieved a call from American Veterans Support Foundation. They won't take no for an answer. She gave some money. She said that she will not give money again. This group preys on the elderly.
Judy Kenney February 21, 2013 at 05:34 PM
I also received a call from this organization and found them to be VERY pushy, eliciting a pledge from me -- I told them they could rely on the amount I pledged to give -- I felt that this statement from me was recorded -- I have received their paper work but after reading these reports do not wish to pay them -- Am I legally required to honor my pledge? -- HELP!
Lisa Mittan April 09, 2013 at 02:27 PM
I just received a call (in Colorado) as well. The caller ID showed a Colorado - 303 - area code which was answered with a "hello" by the same voice as the initial person who called (before I was transferred to the "records department" to verify the address for them to send the pledge packet). The "records department" person said she was "paid to verify my information" and then wanted me to give information, as opposed to validating that what she already had was correct. I went to the Colorado State Attorney General's office (linked from Stacy's post from last October) and had to re-search, but found the same info. Here's the kicker: $4M in contributions (revenue) received, and $3.5M in fundraising (expenses). NOT a good ratio, with only $.5M in program services for the veterans. This is definitely a scam - with just enough going to the "beneficiaries" of the charity, to allow this organization to fly under the radar.
Laurel April 10, 2013 at 01:26 PM
Thank you so much for the information. I actually pledged a minimal amount to them and then before writing the check decided to research further to verify their legitimacy. Yes, I would much rather support another, more veteran-friendly and above-board veteran's organization. Thanks again!
Donna weeks May 06, 2013 at 02:31 PM
I thank you for your information. I just received the same call, made my donation after before being told, "God blesses those that, etc...." Thanks to your research I will not be mailing my check!
Norman Kautsky May 25, 2013 at 01:28 PM
I received a request for a donation from this "Foundation". I was curious about the insistance on a specified amount. I called the phone number given and got an answer from a call referral. I was given the address 12 Christopher Way, suite 200 Eatonton PA, no zip. I have not sent anything.
Betty G May 30, 2013 at 10:19 PM
I am now in the process of having my mother's info removed from their mailing and phone listings. I am sure she felt pressured to "donate" and in my opinion a "pledge" is not a binding agreement to send funds. After seeing this research, I would definitely NOT send them money! They are not doing what they profess. My mother has Alzheimer's Disease and is easily confused and I will not stand by and have this happen! Thank you all for your information.
Tugwalla May 31, 2013 at 01:43 AM
I just found out that the Huffington Post owns the Patch.....this explains everything!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Amy May 31, 2013 at 02:14 AM
tugwhatta? Jumping on the "incite ignorance" wagon again! What a tug-tool-a. When does the insanity end? Get a new hobby loser.
Christopher Wright June 02, 2013 at 03:30 PM
Similar experience: a gruff-voiced man (sounded like a drill sergeant) told me to donate "at least" as much as I had donated (in my trusting ignorance) previously. Then someone came on and started asking for all manner of personal information (SS#, etc), which tipped me off that this might be another scam. I am an elderly disabled man, and am now convinced that this type of solicitation is meant to prey on the poor, the elderly and disabled. Over a period of two weeks, I received a half-dozen such calls, each more aggressive than the one before until finally a call demanding a donation! I told the caller I do not use plastic and please take my name off their calling list. The caller slammed the phone down. To all you generous people: BEWARE!!! This is a money-scam, using sympathy for our veterans as a device to get into our wallets!
Gina Serra June 17, 2013 at 03:23 AM
That's an awesome idea! My check is already in the envelope ready to mail. I'm glad I checked into this before I sent it. Something just told me to check it out. I will also send a copy of the thread to them...I think they'll like that!


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