Jewish War Veterans are active participants in the VA Volunteer Service organization. We are looked upon as a great resource of volunteers and funds who care for the hospitalized veterans in over 90 VA installations. I'm fortunate to be the National VAVS Officer.
Among my duties is the certification of JWV members to be Representatives and Deputy Representatives for the Jewish War Veterans at the local medical centers and outpatient clinics.
Other duties are to have an open channel work to the VA Central Office to make our concerns of veterans care known, whether regarding a single veteran or putting into policy that official events at the VA's cannot occur on religious holidays, ours or others.
President Lincoln began the tradition that American servicemen and, now in this century, servicewomen, who also have served the country in times of conflict, are to be cared for after their stint in service as payment for leaving their homes and jobs to protect our nation.
The VAVS was formed as an entity within the Veterans' Affairs over 50 years ago. This group of organizations began to set the guidelines for having both Veterans' Service Organizations (VSO's) and non-veteran organizations interact with the staff of the hospitals and clinics in which they have signed on to volunteer.
We came on in the first year of the VAVS and have been active ever since. Some have had annual events since the beginning of their work at the VA; others are making their mark with new ideas that fit the way the VA has changed.