Project Valour-IT, in memory of SFC William V. Ziegenfuss (Captain Chuck Ziegenfuss' father), provides voice-controlled software and laptop computers to wounded Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines recovering from hand and arm injuries or amputations at major military medical centers. Operating laptops by speaking into a microphone, our wounded heroes are able to send and receive messages from friends and loved ones, surf the 'Net, and communicate with buddies still in the field without having to press a key or move a mouse.
Every cent raised for Project Valour-IT goes directly to the purchase and shipment of voice-activated laptops for wounded servicemembers. As of October 2006, Valour-IT has distributed nearly 600 laptops to severely wounded Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines across the country.
During its initial phase, Valour-IT created "libraries" of laptops equipped with voice-controlled software for the severely wounded staying at major military medical centers. In many cases a laptop was provided to a wounded hero for permanent use.
Valour-IT is continuing to accept donations of any amount to supply the "libraries" of laptops at major medical centers and gifts to individuals, but has also added the option of an individual or organization directly sponsoring a wounded soldier by completely funding the cost of a laptop and continuing to provide him or her with personal support and encouragement throughout recovery. This has proved to be an excellent project for churches, groups of coworkers or friends, and members of community organizations such Boy Scouts.
Most recently thanks to the efforts of the Military Order of the Purple Heart, Valour-IT is now able to reach personnel in VA hospitals who would benefit from a Valour-IT laptop.
Wounded military personnel can request a laptop through the sign-up form if they are recovering at home or in military hospitals, or through the Valour-IT/Soldiers' Angels representatives if they are patients at the following medical centers:
Balboa Naval Hospital
Brooke Army Medical Center
Madigan Regional Medical Center
National Naval Medical Center (Bethesda Naval Hospital)
Naval Hospital, Camp Pendleton
Robert E. Bush Naval Hospital (29 Palms)
Walter Reed Army Medical Center
It's a tax-deductible donation and eligible for matching funds from companies who do that sort of thing (see: http://soldiersangels.org/valour/irsinfo.html for proof for the cautious).
The snail mail address for those who'd rather donate that way (be sure to put Air Force in big letters on the check):
1150 N Loop 1604 W, Suite 108-493
San Antonio, TX 78248
Let's be a part of something big.
"At that time I had no use of either hand. I know how humbling it is, how humiliating it feels. And I know how much better I felt, how amazingly more functional I felt, after Soldiers' Angels provided me with a laptop and a loyal reader provided me with the software. I can't wait to do the same, to give that feeling to another soldier at Walter Reed. "
--CPT Chuck Ziegenfuss, on the inspiration for Valour-IT
Project Valour IT