2020 Veteran Suicide Prevention Campaign
The SWVF is attacking the epidemic of Veteran Suicides as its signature issue for 2020.
The tragic facts illuminate the reason for and the urgency of this initiative:
- On average, 20 Veterans commit suicide every day
- 70% of those Veterans were not in the Veterans Administration’s health care system
- Arizona has the 6th highest Veteran suicide rate in the Nation
- Veterans in Arizona are three times more likely to die by suicide than non-Veterans
- In 2018 the VA only spent 24% of the money they were appropriated for Suicide Prevention Community Outreach
- Despite everything that has been done and the resources expended, the suicides continue to increase
Tom Sheets, Executive Director of the SWVF commented that, “By any objective measure, this is a national tragedy. “National solutions,” however, are not going to resolve this problem. We must act locally and encourage agencies and organizations in all sectors to collaborate in attacking this problem. That is one of the reasons that Governor Ducey recently joined six other Governors in the inaugural Governors’ Challenge to Prevent Suicide among Service Members, Veterans and their Families.”
The SWVF Board of Directors was struck by the coincidence of the “20” suicides a day and that this year is 2020. Titled “$20 to Reduce the 20 in 2020,” its strategy is to embed in the consciousness of every Arizonan that every time they see, hear, or write the date 2020, they will think of the 20 Veterans that will commit suicide that day—and then do something to help attack the problem!”
What can they do to help? Donate to the SWVF Veteran Suicide Prevention Campaign. To reinforce the message of “20,” donation levels of $20, $20 a month for 12 months, $220, $2020, and “other amount” have been established. To be sure, donations of any amount help and will be greatly appreciated.
Ryan Hilbun, President of the SWVF Board of Directors, noted, “Our goal is to raise $100,000 in 2020. Quarterly we will issue grant announcements, accept applications from non-profit organizations engaged in preventing Veteran Suicides, and make financial grants to provide additional resources so that those organizations can do more.” Sheets added that “We will continue our scholarship and other charitable giving programs, but they will not be funded by donations to this campaign. These donations will only support Veteran suicide prevention and are 100% deductible as a charitable contribution. Further, our goal is to ensure that at least 97.5 % of donated funds will be used for direct program support, minimizing the expenses to create and market the program.”
For more information about the SWVF, please visit our website www.swvfoundation.org. To request a presentation by the SWVF on the Veteran Suicide Prevention, email Tom Sheets at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 602.677.2961.
4 ways to contribute:
- At any Southwest Veterans Chamber of Commerce event
- By mailing a check to SWVF at the address below
- On-line at www.swvcc.org/savealife/
- By calling 602.677.2961 with credit card information
While donations in any form are graciously accepted and appreciated, checks and cash save merchant services fees and put 100% of your donation to work.