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Vietnam Veterans of America, the nation's largest and most successful Vietnam veterans organization, and the only Vietnam veterans organization chartered by Congress, is proud of what it has accomplished over the last twenty years. Those accomplishments are many and varied.
They include:


Rebuilding the camaraderie of Vietnam-era veterans and providing a sense of self-worth and pride in service.

Holding biennial National Leadership Conferences and National Conventions, which provide a forum for veterans and their families to interact with community leaders and their counterparts from across the country.

Creating and maintaining our Veteran Support Foundation (VSF), formerly Vietnam Veterans Assistance Fund (VVAF), a philanthropic effort that provides financial assistance to VVA, its state councils, and its chapters.

Taking the lead in working with homeless veterans, including sponsorships of national and local symposiums and stand-downs. Among many other milestones in this area, VVA worked with congressman Lane Evans to hold the first-ever hearing on homeless veterans in the House of Veterans Affairs committee in September of 1986.

Developing a unique program as a national advocate for Vietnam veterans who were subsequently incarcerated, helping them gain access to VA benefits and services to which they are entitled.

Leading the fight for full accounting of POW/MIAs for twenty years. We hold as a profound trust and obligation the responsibility to account for those American service members who remain unrepatriated, missing, or otherwise unaccounted for as a result of their service to our country during the Vietnam War.

Initiating the successful Veterans Initiative program, a veteran-to-veteran effort that, since 1991, has promoted the direct exchange of information on unaccounted-for American servicemen and Vietnamese war casualties between American and Vietnamese veterans. The Veterans Initiative has produced measurable results towards full accounting on both sides.

Taking the lead on women veterans' issues, including ensuring recognition of service access to benefits and appropriate medical treatment of women veterans in VA facilities.

With "never again will one generation of veterans abandon another" as its founding principle, VVA has reached out to veterans of other conflicts, including providing office space and significant tangible support to the Veterans of Modern Warfare.

Single-handedly leading the fight for judicial review of disabled veterans' claims for benefits. The result: In 1988, Congress passed a law creating the U.S. Court of Veterans appeals. This allowed veterans to appeal VA benefits denials to a court and required VA to obey the rule of law.

Spearheading a long and successful lobbying effort to establish and maintain the Vet Center program.

Providing unwavering advocacy for congressional passage of laws supporting increased job training and job-placement assistance for unemployed and underemployed Vietnam-era veterans.

Taking the lead on minority veterans' issues, including early and staunch support for the creation of the Center of Minority Veterans and the Advisory Committee on Minority Veterans Affairs.

VVA has been the major force on the issue of Agent Orange for the past two decades. Our Nehmer v. Veterans Administration lawsuit, filed in 1986, forced the VA to begin compensating veterans with diseases linked to Agent Orange. VVA convinced Congress to pass the Agent Orange Act of 1991, which required the National Academy of Sciences to report on what diseases were related to Agent Orange. As a result, VA now pays compensation for nine such diseases.

Being responsible for a 1996 law that, for the first time in our nation's history, provides medical care and compensation to the children of veterans whose parents suffer genetic damage from their military service-in this case Vietnam veterans' children with the birth defect spina bifida, which has been linked to their parents' exposure to Agent Orange.

Running the Veterans Benefits Program, which provides education to veterans about government benefits to which they are entitled and trains individuals to represent veterans in their claims to secure benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Appeals.

Consistently winning a higher percentage of cases at the VA's Board of Veteran's Appeals than any other veterans organization. VVA also has increased the number of cases they handle at the BVA, to an all-time high in FY 1998.

E-mail us at membership@vva.org

 

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