Wisconsin Veterans Network
Year founded: 2017
- Quentin Hatfield, Executive Director
- George Banda, Board President
Annual budget: $457,000
Who you serve: Any veteran, active duty, guard or reserve service member in Wisconsin, irrespective of time in service, who has unmet needs from homelessness, joblessness, assistance with home or car repairs, energy assistance, access to education or health benefits and any other unmet need.
Transitioning active duty military personnel who are returning to Wisconsin upon exit from the military and need assistance identifying housing, work opportunity and any other resource to facilitate their return to civilian life.
What you do: For Wisconsin veterans we collaborate with agencies statewide to provide resources for urgent or crisis needs; link veterans to education, counseling and other needs and benefits.
For transitioning service members, we begin working with them 6-12 months prior to their exit from the military, connecting them with volunteer sponsors who help them build a plan and identify resources needed when they arrive home, to ensure a smooth transition to civilian life.
What you need: We need to develop new partnerships with veteran service organizations, nonprofits and city, county and state agencies statewide to ensure the broadest possible array of resources available to meet veteran and transitioning service member needs.
In addition, as a 501c3 nonprofit organization, we need financial partners, donors and foundations who are focused on meeting the needs of those who have served or are serving.
Finally, we need volunteers who are willing to commit time to helping active duty service members build a homecoming plan and ensure the resources they and their families need are in place prior to their return to Wisconsin.
What makes you different: Almost all of the services provided to veterans and/or active duty military personnel are provided through collaboration with agencies statewide who can meet the physical, social and health needs of veterans and service members. In addition, we do not partner with any organization that charges our veteran clients for their services. Also, we provide space in our facilities for partners to meet with our clients and do not charge for use of our space. We have ongoing outreach activities to reach the underserved segments of the veteran population, to include seniors, post 9/11, Latino and other minority veteran populations. Our podcast is provided as an avenue for veterans, in their own words, to relate their experiences transitioning from military to civilian life.
How to get involved: There are any number of ways to become involved in our work:
- Host fundraising events or meetings where the VetsNet story can be told and donors have the opportunity to support our work.
- Help us identify corporations and foundations that have a focus on veteran needs to which we can appeal for support.
- Become a volunteer sponsor for a transitioning service member to build a homecoming plan. To volunteer, simply go to the website: etssponsorship.com, and sign up as a sponsor.
- Always look for veterans and their families with unmet needs and either refer them to us or put us in touch with them.