Dear Donors and Veterans,
It is with a humble heart today that I pen this letter. I am genuinely grateful for the opportunity to speak directly to you, to sincerely thank you for the support that TOPGUN Fighter Foundation has already seen from our families, our friends, our colleagues and peers, and the community at large.
TGFF was founded, in principle, two years ago between two great friends who had made it a long-standing habit of finding ways to be of service, and proved to be a mutually bonding trait.
Matt and I had long discussed the idea of putting our combined skills and hearts together to be of real use for veterans. Matt, of course, is a veteran, a retired Navy F-18 Fighter Pilot, and he is most acutely aware of what veterans face.
In practice, Matt and I had been doing what we loved to do for the organizations we were each involved with. Those causes are still near and dear to our hearts; we continue to support them. Ultimately, we decided to commit ourselves and every minute that we have to make a tangible connection with veterans, to not look away from the struggles of the men and women who volunteered their lives in the name of service. I suspect none bargained for the aftermath.
On February 11th, 2020, TGFF was incorporated in the state of Florida. On June 17th, 2020, TGFF was recognized as a registered charitable entity, 501(c)(3).
From the first scribbles in notebooks to each subsequent phase, the TGFF has been funded by Whiz and I, family, and close friends. All those funds have gone to “infrastructure”, which is largely coffee, a coffee pot, and a couple of whiteboards, and directly developing programs that meet our mission of providing immediate interventional assistance to veterans, and subsequently, the other incredibly important programs. Those programs are outlined in OUR WORK and will have more information in the coming weeks. We will have these available in the fall and winter of 2020 and include: transitioning back to civilian life, referrals to licensed therapists, substance-abuse programs, counseling groups, mentoring, career counseling, volunteer opportunities, and our much anticipated Veteran Hero Canine Champions!
Currently, we are funding all of the administrative costs. It is our commitment to ensure that all donations are to go to the support of veteran programs, the most critical program is that of The 24 HOUR CRISIS LINE, which will directly assist and improve the lives of the veterans we serve. We are accountable to our veterans, our donors, our stakeholders, for each and every dollar that is generously donated. Our annual report will be available in March of the following year.
I want to highlight that as donors, you can earmark your gifts to the specific programs that resonate with you. Our first mission, however, is to build upon the continued need for awareness of PTSD, TBI’s, and the alarming rate of suicide in our veteran community.
On behalf of the TGFF board, I wish to thank you for supporting our work and our mission of providing life-saving resources and pathways to successful and happy lives for our veterans and their families. Thank you for making room in your hearts for our work and showing the same generosity of spirit that our veterans have demonstrated for us.
Matt and I hold a special place in our hearts for veterans, and it is my distinct honor that among my dearest friends there includes members of the military and first responders. My love and my deepest thanks go out to all of them.
Executive Director, Vice-Chair