We are dedicated to one single purpose: empowering veterans to lead high-quality lives with respect and dignity. We accomplish this by ensuring that veterans and their families can access the full range of benefits available to them; fighting for the interests of America’s injured heroes on Capitol Hill; and educating the public about the great sacrifices and needs of veterans transitioning back to civilian life. This mission is carried forward by: • Providing free, professional assistance to veterans and their families in obtaining benefits and services earned through military service and provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs and other agencies of government. • Providing outreach concerning its program services to the American people generally, and to disabled veterans and their families specifically. • Representing the interests of disabled veterans, their families, their widowed spouses and their orphans before Congress, the White House and the judicial branch, as well as state and local government. • Extending DAV’s mission of hope into the communities where these veterans and their families live through a network of state-level departments and local chapters. • Providing a structure through which disabled veterans can express their compassion for their fellow veterans through a variety of volunteer programs.
The purpose of DAV is to uphold and maintain the Constitution and the laws of the United States; to realize the true American ideals and aims for which those eligible to membership fought; to advance the interests and work for the betterment of all wounded, gassed, injured and disabled veterans; to cooperate with the United States Department of Veterans Affairs and all other public and private agencies devoted to the cause of improving and advancing the condition, health and interest of all wounded, gassed, injured and disabled veterans; to stimulate a feeling of mutual devotion, helpfulness and comradeship among all wounded, gassed, injured and disabled veterans; to serve our comrades, our communities and our country; and to encourage in all people that spirit of understanding that will guard against future wars. DAV was chartered by Congress in 1932 to work for the physical, mental, social and economic rehabilitation of wounded and disabled veterans and to obtain fair and just compensation, adequate and sympathetic medical care, and suitable gainful employment for those war veterans who had been disabled in the service of their country.
Our Congressional Charter and Why It’s Important
The U.S. Congress chartered DAV on June 17, 1932. A congressional charter is a law passed by Congress describing the purpose, authority and powers of an organization or agency. Beyond conferring the powers needed to achieve its statutorily assigned goal, a charter also provides an organization or agency with a set of standard operational powers: the power to sue and be sued; to contract and be contracted with; to acquire, hold and convey property; and so forth. There are currently more than 90 nonprofit organizations listed in Title 36 of the U.S. Code. These organizations include DAV (Disabled American Veterans), the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States. Chartered organizations, or corporations, listed are not agencies of the United States and therefore do not receive financial support from the federal government. The Department of Veterans Affairs requires that any veterans service organization be recognized by the VA Office of General Counsel for the purpose of preparation, presentation and prosecution of claims under laws. Maintaining our congressional charter is what satisfies this requirement. To keep our congressional charter, a few requirements that must be met include educating the public about the sacrifices and needs of injured and ill veterans, educating injured and ill veterans about the benefits and resources available to them, and submitting a report to Congress no later than Jan. 1 of each year on activities during the prior fiscal year. The congressional charter and its requirements make it imperative that items such as clientele claims and records are sent timely to the national service office for review and submission and that all Local Veterans Assistance Program (LVAP) hours are properly reported