Governor Tom Wolf announced this week that $800,000 of grant money from the Veterans Trust Fund (VTF) will be awarded to 29 Pennsylvania organizations that support veterans’ programs throughout the commonwealth. The VTF is administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA).
The VTF is funded by generous Pennsylvanians who voluntarily make a $3 donation when applying for or renewing their driver’s license, photo ID, or a motor vehicle registration. The VTF also receives proceeds that come from the sale of the Honoring Our Veterans license plate and private donations. Since the grant program began in 2013, a total of $3,632,860 has been awarded to organizations that serve Pennsylvania veterans.
“The VTF continues to serve as an important source of funding for organizations and county offices that provide much-needed programs and services for veterans, thanks to voluntary donations from generous Pennsylvanians,” said Gov. Tom Wolf. “The VTF has been a tremendous program for Pennsylvania veterans addressing critical issues including homelessness, employment, addiction treatment, behavioral health, and nutrition.”
Grantees slated to receive funding identified $912,522 in matching funds pledged toward grant-funded initiatives. Combined with the VTF grants, this will result in more than $1.7 million for veterans’ initiatives during the next two years.
“It is important for us to connect with all of our veterans who need assistance, but the DMVA cannot do that alone,” said Maj. Gen. Tony Carrelli, Pennsylvania’s adjutant general and head of the DMVA. “The VTF grantees are vital community partners that help to broaden our reach from the big cities to rural and isolated areas. This gives every veteran in the commonwealth the opportunity to participate in the programs and services they have earned through service to our nation.”
Up to a total of $150,000 in grant funding was available for new, innovative, or expanded programs or services provided by County Directors of Veterans Affairs or the Pennsylvania Association of County Directors of Veterans Affairs. The two areas of emphasis for grantees in this category were veterans’ outreach and veterans’ courts. The grantees, the specific award amounts, and the programs supported are as follows: