9 Best Charities That Support Soldiers’ Well-Being (Complete 2024 List)

9 Best Charities That Support Soldiers’ Well-Being (Complete 2024 List)

By
Diana Stancu

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Active duty service members now comprise less than 1% of all US adults, or around 1.3 million soldiers, with almost 200,000 of them being in troops permanently assigned abroad. Therefore, a lot of issues they encounter can go unnoticed, like the long-term physical or psychological effects of combat or lack of peer support networks. In addition, servicemen experience financial difficulties and food insecurity, as well as emotional burdens when being deployed for a long time. Fortunately, charities nationwide are fighting to empower soldiers physically, mentally, and financially. So we had to ask: What are the best charities that support soldiers’ well-being?

The best charities that support soldiers’ well-being are Soldiers’ Angels, the Navy SEAL Foundation, and the Green Beret Foundation. Other charities, like Operation Gratitude and the Coast Guard Foundation, empower active duty and wounded military members.

Whether you want to help boost the morale of deployed troops, provide soldiers with the financial resources they need to thrive, or ensure that they remain physically and psychologically healthy, there is a charity for you. Keep reading to learn more about what the best charities that support soldiers’ well-being are all about, how they work, and what would be your best way to make a contribution.

Here’s What All the Best Charities That Support Soldiers’ Well-Being Have in Common

The charities on this list were chosen based on their mission, transparency ratings, and achievements.

They operate across the US and their worldwide military branches to increase soldiers’ happiness. 

Most of the charities below run programs that support the holistic health of military personnel to keep them combat-ready. For instance, they send packages to deployed troops worldwide to boost their morale and wellness by keeping them connected with loved ones. 

They also assist soldiers if they suffer physical or psychological injuries during their service and advance the prevention of military suicide. Moreover, they offer financial support and counseling to help servicemen and their families to be self-sufficient. 

Yet, all the charities share the same goal of honoring the sacrifices of military individuals nationwide. 

These Are the 9 Best Charities That Support Soldiers’ Well-Being in 2024

Below are our favorite charities that support soldiers’ well-being (you can click on their link to directly jump to their section in this article):

(At the end of this article we’ll also share our six-step approach on how you can select the best charity to support.)

1

Soldiers’ Angels: May No Soldier Go Unloved

Logo for Soldiers’ Angels
Soldiers' Angels

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Their transparency & ratings:

Soldiers’ Angels has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and holds the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar

“May no soldier go unloved, May no soldier walk alone, May no soldier be forgotten, Even after they come home.”

Soldiers’ Angels

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What they do:

oldiers’ Angels runs monthly drive-through food distributions to get fresh groceries and other products to service members who face food insecurity. In addition, they support deployed troops with gifts such as care packages, home-baked goods, or basic everyday necessities, and fund help for military medics and military dog units. Moreover, they offer financial assistance to service members during holiday celebrations and support military families when they encounter natural disasters. They also organize baby showers for expecting military spouses of deployed soldiers. 

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What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Soldiers’ Angels has funded $264 million in aid to the military community and sent over 1 million care packages to the combat deployed, with the help of volunteers in all 50 states and 31 countries. What’s more, they have provided 300,000 soldiers with food products through their monthly distributions. Also, they have drive-throughs in 7 cities that each serve 200 servicemen with 75 pounds of produce. For example, in 2022, they distributed 328,000 essential items, food products, and clothing to deployed service members, along with 193,000 cards or letters from loved ones to keep them connected to their homes. 

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to Soldiers’ Angels on their website. You can also contribute by volunteering, donating goods, or joining their special fundraising campaigns

2

Navy SEAL Foundation: They’re on the Frontline. We’re Standing Behind Them.

logo for Navy SEAL Foundation
Navy SEAL Foundation: They Say, We Prove

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Their transparency & ratings:

The Navy SEAL Foundation has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and holds the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar

“We support SEALs, SWCCs, veterans, and their families, and stand at the forefront of crucial care for this unique community. We are here to help keep our warriors in the fight. We are there for them every step of the way. ”

Navy SEAL Foundation

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What they do:

The Navy SEAL Foundation provides servicemen and their families with educational grants for scholarships or other professional certifications to help advance their careers. They also work to improve soldiers’ mental health with specialized programs and training. In addition, their Warrior Fitness Program improves the long-term physical challenges of post-deployment troops, such as chronic pain, cognitive decline, or sleep disruption. Furthermore, they assist soldiers with respite care and community events while giving financial and emotional support during personal crises.

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What they’ve achieved:

To date, the Navy SEAL Foundation has invested over $163 million across their supportive programs for the Naval Special Warfare community. For example, in 2022, they invested $9 million to advance the health of active duty soldiers and 2,000 post-combat injured troops, including a $2 million grant for their Warrior Fitness Program. In the same year, they funded $1.5 million in crisis assistance for service members and provided nearly 16,000 hours of respite services to military personnel. Also, they awarded 553 educational scholarships for servicemen and their families. 

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Navy SEAL Foundation on their website. You can also contribute by participating in their fundraising sports events or buying from their online store

3

Green Beret Foundation: Supporting America’s Special Forces Soldiers and Their Families

Logo for Green Beret Foundation
Green Beret Foundation - Supporting Special Forces Soldiers and their families

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Their transparency & ratings:

The Green Beret Foundation has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and holds the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar

“We honor our commitment to past and present Green Berets by providing Special Forces Soldiers and their families with emergency, immediate, and ongoing support.”

Green Beret Foundation 

⚒️

What they do:

The Green Beret Foundation aids soldiers wounded in active duty by giving essential products and financial assistance to keep family members together during hospital stays. The charity also funds healthcare costs and holistic therapies for servicemen, such as Neurofeedback and Aphasia Therapy, to boost their wellness and morale. In addition, they run programs for healing military-related brain injuries and preventing military suicide through psychological help and peer support. Furthermore, they organize outdoor recreational activities like fishing and hunting to connect the military community. Also, they support soldiers during the transition period to civilian life

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What they’ve achieved:

Since their inception, the Green Beret Foundation has invested nearly $20 million in supportive programs that served 15,000 soldiers and family members. In addition, they support each wounded serviceman who applies for help with a $2,500 check for hospital and recovery expenses. Moreover, in 2022, they funded nearly $1 million in programs that advance the health and wellness of active duty soldiers. In the same year, they invested $776,000 in transition support for military personnel wishing to change their careers. 

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Green Beret Foundation on their website. In addition, you can buy their merchandise, create an online fundraiser, or join their fundraising events.

4

Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society: We’re Here to Aid Our Soldiers

Logo for Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society
NMCRS Our Mission

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Their transparency & ratings:

The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator. They also hold the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“We fight to provide consistent, compassionate, and nonjudgmental service to active duty and retired Sailors, Marines and their families in financial need.”

Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society

⚒️

What they do:

The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society serves active duty Sailors and Marines by providing financial assistance and education programs to tackle financial insecurity and help them be self-sufficient. They also offer Quick Assist Loans for urgent financial needs and run workshops for soldiers and spouses to prepare financially before welcoming a child. In addition, they award emergency grants to servicemen and their families if they experience natural disasters or require emergency travel for medical reasons. Moreover, they fund scholarships for service members to help advance their careers. 

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

To date, the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society has expanded their network of support in 211 locations118 afloat and 93 ashore – to assist Sailors and Marines nationwide. For example, in 2023, they provided $50 million in financial assistance to nearly 200,000 soldiers and spouses. In the same year, they also assisted 40,000 military personnel with emergency financial grants for transportation needs and living expenses, such as food or utilities. In addition, they served 5,800 soldiers with budgeting education to enhance their financial knowledge.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society on their website. You can also contribute through volunteering or by applying for a job

5

Operation Gratitude: Saying ”Thank You” to All Who Served

Logo for Operation Gratitude
Operation Gratitude - Thanking All Who Serve

🔎

Their transparency & ratings:

Operation Gratitude has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator

“Our mission is to say Thank You to our Military community, and to honor their service by creating opportunities for all Americans to express gratitude.”

Operation Gratitude

⚒️

What they do:

Operation Gratitude collects and assembles products of care and comfort into packages that they send to military personnel to show them support. For instance, their volunteers create care packages for deployed troops across the US, which contain handwritten letters of gratitude, snacks, hygiene products, and handmade items. In addition, they send packages to new military recruits to congratulate them at boot camp graduations. They also offer gifts of gratitude to wounded active duty soldiers and their caregivers to boost their morale in times of struggle.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

To date, Operation Gratitude has sent over 4 million care packages with tailored items to boost the morale and resilience of service members. And today, they send up to 200,000 care packages per year. For example, in 2022, they distributed 650,000 handmade items to military personnel and sent 310,000 handwritten letters from grateful Americans to deployed troops and new soldiers. In the same year, their 370,000 volunteers reached nearly 55,000 deployed warriors and 30,000 new military graduates.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to Operation Gratitude on their website. You can also support them by collecting and donating spare change from your business or donating products for their packages

6

Coast Guard Foundation: Honoring Heroes and Empowering Their Families

Logo for Coast Guard Foundation
Coast Guard Foundation: Stepping up to Support the Coast Guard

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Their transparency & ratings:

The Coast Guard Foundation has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator. They also hold the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“Every day, Coast Guard members risk their lives to protect our country. When we stand together and show them our appreciation, we can ensure they remain always ready—no matter what.”

Coast Guard Foundation

⚒️

What they do:

The Coast Guard Foundation runs social training programs to help soldiers create support networks to promote healthy relationships. They also offer resilience workshops to enhance the emotional and mental well-being of Coast Guard members to better face their military challenges. Moreover, the charity supports servicemen if they have military-related injuries or if they encounter natural disasters. Furthermore, they work with the Coast Guard Academy to advance academic opportunities for future warriors. Also, they award scholarships and professional certifications to active duty members to boost their careers. 

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What they’ve achieved:

Since their inception, the Coast Guard Foundation has continued to support service members in need. For example, in 2022, they invested over $5 million in supportive programs for active duty members and the Coast Guard Academy. In the same year, they provided more than $340,000 in disaster relief grants to 171 Coast Guard soldiers and their families who lost their homes to hurricanes. They also helped 367 servicemen with workforce development programs and higher education grants. In addition, they funded 252 projects to support soldiers’ morale and ran 27 resiliency programs for suicide prevention. 

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to the Coast Guard Foundation on their website. You can also contribute by buying their merchandise or joining their corporate partnership opportunities.

7

Operation: Care and Comfort: Sending a Touch of Home to Our Troops

Logo for Operation: Care and Comfort
OCCUSA-PSA2024(1)

🔎

Their transparency & ratings:

Operation: Care and Comfort has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and holds the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar

“We recognize the sacrifice of our troops who leave behind their safety, comfort, and homes to protect ours. That’s why we strive to send them a little piece of home – a connection back to the memories and comfort they left behind.”

Operation: Care and Comfort

⚒️

What they do:

Operation: Care and Comfort helps civilians to create tailored, theme-based care packages with donated items and other essential products for deployed soldiers to help meet their everyday needs. In this way, the charity helps boost the morale of troops and supports loved ones in expressing gratitude for their sacrifices. Furthermore, they work with sports teams and entertainment venues to provide donated tickets to sports games and artistic events to the military community. In addition, they work with companies to “adopt military families” and provide critical resources to help them thrive.

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Operation: Care and Comfort has continued to serve military-connected individuals. For example, between 2016 and 2022, they distributed over 210,000 care packages to deployed troops. In addition, they have provided more than 25,000 donated tickets for sports or entertainment events to soldiers and their family members. Also, in 2022, they invested nearly $1.2 million in their care package programs and funded over $730,000 in their Tickets for Troops project to improve the well-being of military personnel.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to Operation: Care and Comfort on their website. You can also support them by volunteering or starting corporate collaborations for campaigns, fundraisings, and drives.

8

USA Cares: Stability for Soldiers and Veterans in Crisis

Logo for USA Cares
USA Cares "From The Eyes of A Child"

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Their transparency & ratings:

USA Cares has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and holds the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar

“Our mission is to provide post-9/11 military veterans, service members, and their families with financial assistance and post service skills training to create a foundation for long-term stability.”

USA Cares

⚒️

What they do:

USA Cares helps service members who face financial hardships because of military service-related incidents by paying for food and essential bills. Also, their Financial Education & Empowerment Program improves the quality of life for military-connected individuals to create long-term financial stability. In addition, they provide programs and fellowships to help service members transition to civilian careers. They do this by improving necessary skills and giving development training while paying for their expenses when they train for a new job. 

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

To date, USA Cares has helped over 116,000 service members and their families during critical times of need. They have also helped more than 100 military members transition to civilian careers. In addition, they have expanded their network to reach military personnel across 36 Chapters in 26 states. For instance, in 2022, they provided $1.5 million in assistance to 845 soldiers and veterans. In the same year, their emergency financial assistance prevented 509 evictions and 224 car losses. Furthermore, they helped pay 241 utility bills for servicemen in crisis and provided food support for 146 military families

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to USA Cares on their website. In addition, you can start a GoFundMe for military families, become a volunteer, or attend their public events

9

Support The Enlisted Project: Honoring Patriotism and the Service to Country

Logo for Support the Enlisted Project (STEP)
Support The Enlisted Project - STEP

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Their transparency & ratings:

Support The Enlisted Project has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator. They also hold the Platinum Seal of Transparency from GuideStar.

“We fight to help all junior active duty enlisted members have a better understanding of their financial situation and a personalized plan to achieve their goals.”

Support The Enlisted Project

⚒️

What they do:

Support The Enlisted Project supports active duty soldiers with emergency assistance grants to prevent evictions, food insecurity, or other losses of basic needs. They also connect service members with financial counselors to develop an individualized plan for future financial well-being. Furthermore, they run interactive workshops to help soldiers develop personal financial goals and a concrete plan to achieve them. In addition, they distribute goods such as food, clothes, and baby items to the military community and hold annual educational fairs to advance academic opportunities for servicemen and their families. 

🚀

What they’ve achieved:

Since their founding, Support The Enlisted Project has distributed over $2.5 million in financial grants and assistance to 7,400 service members. In this way, they prevented over 1,000 imminent evictions and car losses. In addition, 94% of participants in their financial workshops improved their financial well-being and did not require additional assistance. For example, in 2023, they reached 118,000 soldiers and their families across their supportive programs and distributed basic goods to 7,000 military communities. In addition, they offered financial assistance to 1,131 servicemen from 38 states.

Ways to contribute:

You can donate to Support The Enlisted Project on their website. You can also get involved by donating products, volunteering, or starting a Facebook fundraiser

How Can You Select the Best Charities to Support?

The charities on the list are, we deem, the best charities that support soldiers’ well-being. However, you may have a particular charity you want to support. Let’s look at what you can do to ensure your contribution has the most significant impact.

  • Check out the charity website. Charities that are worthy of your donations are transparent in their mission and their figures. Familiarize yourself with their history, mission, and values. Their website usually is the best place to start.
  • Identify the charity’s mission. Without a goal, the charity is likely to fail. If the charity’s mission isn’t clear, it’s probably worth looking for a charity that does have a clear mission. 
  • Check if the charity has measurable goals. An effective charity has clear goals. You want to know your donation will help the charity reach its goals. But if it doesn’t have targets, it’s likely to fail or squander your gift. The charity should be able to account for its spending and supply evidence of the work they do.
  • Assess the successes or goals the charity has achieved. You wouldn’t invest in a business if it kept missing its targets. In the same way, charities are like this too. If no one is assessing a charity’s progress in reaching its targets, the chances are they’re not making a substantial positive change.
  • Check the charity’s financials and stats. Trustworthy organizations will publish financial statements and reports each year. Some might be exempt from having to do so, but they should be able to provide them to public members who are interested in donating.
  • Locate sources who work with or benefit from the charity. Word of mouth and first-hand experience of a charity’s work lets you know the charity’s quality. If you’re able to do so, check out the charity for yourself or speak to someone familiar with it. This way, your donation will go to the right place. 

How Can You Best Support These Charities?

After you’ve made your decision, it’s time for you to decide on how you’d like to help the charities you’ve chosen. Check how you can help – each charity runs specific programs that have unique aims. Find out what the aim of such programs is and whether they are right for you. 

Here are a few ways you can help your chosen charity:

  • Donate money. You can find donation pages on the website of most charities. Your donation can be a one-time payment, or you can set it to be deducted regularly at different intervals. You can mostly pay via credit card, but some charities also take PayPal or Bitcoin payments.
  • Buy their official merchandise. Charities can also raise money by selling merchandise. So, you can support them by buying the mugs, shirts, caps, pens, pencils, and any other such items they may be selling. Ideally, you should buy as much as you can to share and spread the word about the charity’s activities.
  • Engage in volunteer work. As you’ve seen from our descriptions above, some charities engage in a lot of local and grassroots programs. You can help by taking on and organizing the program in your local area.
  • Help their fundraising efforts. You can spread the word about the charity in your workplace, school, church, etc., and hold creative fundraising drives on social media or offline within your small circles.
  • Share their stories. Most charities have compelling stories that you can share with your audience to attract more people to the cause.

Final Thoughts

Now it is up to you to select the charity that resonates most with you. And whichever charity you end up choosing and contributing to, we are sure that they will immensely appreciate your support. Hopefully, the information within this article has made this selection process a bit easier for you to support charities dedicated to supporting soldiers’ well-being—based on the causes that matter most to you.

Stay impactful,

Illustration of a signature for Diana

PS: Finally, I want to leave you with a thought-provoking TED talk from Dan Pallotta, a leading philanthropic activist and fundraiser, about what is wrong with the way we think about charities – and what we can do about it:

The way we think about charity is dead wrong | Dan Pallotta

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