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Augusta Warrior Project chosen to lead national initiative

Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2013 10:06 AM
Last updated 11:59 PM
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In the most significant sign yet that its model is among the country’s elite, the Au­gusta Warrior Project has been selected to take the program it developed locally and expand it into a national movement that will help hundreds of thousands of veterans transition into civilian life, the nonprofit organization announced Tuesday.

Jim Lorraine, the executive director of the Augusta Warrior Project, said services will expand locally.  FILE/STAFF
FILE/STAFF
Jim Lorraine, the executive director of the Augusta Warrior Project, said services will expand locally.

The multimillion-dollar initiative – led by the national Woun­ded Warrior Project – comes after several major cities including Charlotte, Dal­las, and Birmingham, Ala., modeled their programs after Augusta’s, which has helped 96 veterans find permanent housing, 169 veterans land jobs and 555 veterans enroll in school in the past year.

The national Wounded War­rior Project said the Au­gusta program was an obvious match for its Commu­ni­ty Integration initiative, which is designed to bring services and support directly to veterans most in need.

Jim Lorraine, the executive director of the Augusta Warrior Project, said his staff is honored to carry out this initiative, which will begin in Augusta and expand to five U.S. regions in the next year.

“Augusta should be proud to have fostered such a national model,” Lorraine said. “Without this community’s support, AWP could not be successful. When asked, this community stepped up and met the challenge of supporting our warriors. Now, we get to carry this message to other communities.”

By strengthening the local nonprofits that serve the veteran population and empowering communities to build support networks, the Com­mu­nity Integration initiative will allow each local program to provide a wider cross-section of services, according to details of the agreement.

The Wounded Warrior Pro­ject will provide mentorship and funding, study trends and needs within communities and measure outcomes. The Augusta organization will help injured service members access the programs and services available in their region.

“The collaboration with Augusta Warrior Project allows us to extend our programs’ reach in underserved communities, build community support for warriors transitioning from military to civilian life, and empower other nonprofits to increase the services that are available to injured service members,” said Charlie Abell, the executive vice president for policy and government affairs at the Wounded Warrior Pro­ject. “By joining forces, this innovative collaboration allows us to build up the strength of communities where demand is outpacing supply and increase and enhance the support we provide to wounded service members.”

The August Warrior Pro­ject is a 2012 recipient of a $75,000 Wounded Warrior outreach grant designed to bridge gaps in care and services to service members in seven rural Geor­gia counties surrounding Augusta.

Lorraine said a small team of local coordinators comprised of Cheree Tham, Stephanie Suarez and Rose­mary Forrest will work on the initiative with him.

No local donations will be used to fund the national effort, he said.

“AWP remains an independent, local nonprofit,” Lor­raine said. “Our collaboration with WWP will
allow us to expand our services locally, while at the same time, standing up similar organizations in other communities.”

Comments (6) Add comment
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i-feel-older-2day
72
Points
i-feel-older-2day 09/24/13 - 01:23 pm
2
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Congratulations to Jim and

Congratulations to Jim and his staff. The struggles they experienced in the CSRA has led to bigger and greater things. Way to go!!!!!!

wildman
1119
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wildman 09/25/13 - 04:35 am
1
1
Help

I have contacted The Augusta Warrior Project (Jim Lorraine) several times over the past year asking to volunteer and help the project. Email, face to face and phone messages all in an effort to help. As a veteran helping my fellow veterans is very important. I have responded to the request to donate $20 a month still no call back. I wish him and his team much success, this is an important mission. Veterans of all walks not just the wounded need our help and support. God Bless the Warrior Project.

limekiln111
8
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limekiln111 09/25/13 - 07:19 am
2
1
wildman

please email me at augustawarriorproject@gmail.com and identify yourself as "wildman from he Chronicle". We value your partnership. JRL

soapy_725
43676
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soapy_725 09/25/13 - 07:37 am
1
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All executive directors of 501(3)C's have a big smile. Take note
Unpublished

You would be smiling as well. Volunteers smile too, but for different reasons.

soapy_725
43676
Points
soapy_725 09/25/13 - 07:37 am
1
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Volunteers smile too, but for different reasons.
Unpublished

Volunteers smile too, but for different reasons.

soapy_725
43676
Points
soapy_725 09/25/13 - 07:39 am
1
1
You gotta love charitable organization duplication. And overhead
Unpublished

You gotta love charitable organization duplication. And overhead

soapy_725
43676
Points
soapy_725 09/25/13 - 07:40 am
1
1
The CC weekend lunch bags for kids. GHFB has this program.
Unpublished

The CC weekend lunch bags for kids. GHFB has this program.

soapy_725
43676
Points
soapy_725 09/25/13 - 07:42 am
1
1
People copycat Salvation Army programs, make profits, puff egos.
Unpublished

People copycat Salvation Army programs, make profits, puff egos.

BAMABOY
20
Points
BAMABOY 09/25/13 - 08:20 am
3
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While I believe the program

While I believe the program is great for those who served, I am also a vet, I have some concerns about their 990. Having worked in the nonprofit industry for many years, I want to ensure all of the money that any program raises goes to the actual needs. I looked at their 990 and 43percent of what they have raised goes into operational expenses. I myself would like to have an explaination before I start give my funds. I am just saying. Many who read this will say you are just trying to start trouble and I am not really. I just want to ensure those in need get the help they need. Oh, 25 percent operational expenses is the accepted benchmark for nonprofits. Check it out if you don't believe me.

Riverman1
83792
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Riverman1 09/25/13 - 09:03 am
1
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BamaBoy

BamaBoy, I don't know much about their situation now, but the facts you bring up are interesting. Several years ago when someone else was in charge, I checked their financial forms and they took in over a half million and the only money spent on veterans was about $3,000 to organize a meeting of various agencies. The director was getting paid $85,000 plus travel expenses and about $20,000 went for clerical work. I'd be interested in what the first comment is about that mentioned the problems they HAD?

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