VI 4 Vets, Inc. Overview
VI 4 Vets, Inc. The Virgin Islands for Veterans Program is a consumer operated and organized 501(c)3 nonprofit Public Charity. Established in St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands and in operation since May of 2016, VI4Vets was developed by veterans for veterans. VI4Vets is dedicated to improving the quality of life and care for veterans living in the US Virgin Islands.
Based on well-established evidence in peer-to-peer engagement and peer support, VI4Vets is building a community of veterans where members develop meaningful relationships based on shared experiences and learn from each other that the obstacles they face are not unique and can be overcome. It is from this foundation of mutual respect and support that VI4Vets supports veterans in becoming more active in their education, employment, healthcare, and other benefits their service as earned them.
If you have seen our Facebook or Events pages, it might look like all fun and games, but each of our programs play an essential role in supporting our organization and operations. Our veteran outreach/fundraising events bring our local veterans together in social environments to develop friendships naturally in a comfortable setting, raises awareness of our efforts in the community, provide benefits and resource education, and provide some funding for continued operations. The Patriot Boat Parties, our most popular outreach effort, also affords veterans an opportunity to develop relationships and share experiences. These snorkeling excursions are so much more than outreach and recruiting. Veterans have an opportunity to experience and share in the naturally cathartic beauty and tranquility of “America’s Paradise”.
The VI4Vets veteran community upon which we function has allowed for expansion of services we can provide. These outreach efforts provide VI4Vets with a foundation upon which we have launched both education and employment initiatives.
Community and SMVF Outreach
VI4Vets’ membership and participation has grown steadily in our early months. Since our first outreach event in July of 2016, VI4Vets First Annual Art Auction, with only 12 active member participants, we’ve had concerts/fundraisers, snorkel excursion/boat trips to St. John, beach BBQs, spearfishing tournaments and football events. These events have raised program awareness and grown our active participating membership base . Using the latest innovations in digital media and social networking, VI4Vets has reached thousands with notifications on education, employment, healthcare, benefits, and event information. Additional images available at www.vi4vets.org/events.
Education in the Virgin Islands for Veterans Program covers a broad spectrum of services we are working to provide our members. First, our outreach efforts focus on informing veterans of benefits and services available to them in the US Virgin Islands and beyond. This effort is facilitated by the peer-to-peer environment we strive to maintain where veterans share their experiences with other veterans. Direct educational efforts on the part of volunteers, also provides our members with one on one counseling on education and benefits.