Uniform Champions: A Wise Giver’s Guide to Excellent Assistance for Veterans

The Philanthropy Roundtable
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Donors eager to offer charitable assistance to veterans asked The Philanthropy Roundtable in 2012 to establish one of the country’s very earliest advisory programs on this subject. The first product was a practical guidebook, called Serving Those Who Served, which profiled nonprofits (many of them brand new) showing promise in this field.

Five years later, here is a valuable successor volume. It looks at assistance for veterans from the other side of the table—chronicling the most successful funders in this area, and what they’ve learned, through real-life experience, about the best ways to boost men and women entering civilian life after military service.

In these pages, you’ll hear the stories of a dozen and a half of the country’s savviest donors in this area—a mix of individuals, foundations, and corporate benefactors. Some of these givers focus their charitable work entirely on vets. Others added this worthy population to other philanthropic priorities. All are paragons of smart, efficient, effective giving.

This guidebook is built on years of advisory work, scores of first-hand interviews, and careful research and analysis. It includes a statistical appendix offering a range of indicators on the status of veterans (some of them pointing in surprisingly different directions from conventional news portrayals), an up-to-the-minute review of services provided by government, and many details for donors anxious to be as helpful as possible to those who have worn our nation’s uniform.
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About the author

Thomas Meyer is the program director for veterans services at The Philanthropy Roundtable, and co-founder of the Independence Project. He authored Serving Those Who Served, a 2013 guidebook to philanthropy for veterans, and has published articles in Philanthropy and Security Studies, and been quoted on this subject in the New York Times and elsewhere. Before joining the Roundtable, he completed research with U.S. and U.K. army officers focused on counterinsurgency work in Iraq and Afghanistan. He graduated with distinction in sociology from Yale University, and completed a Fox Fellowship at the University of Cambridge. Thomas grew up in an Army family and currently lives in Washington, D.C.

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Additional Information

Publisher
The Philanthropy Roundtable
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Published on
Mar 17, 2017
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Pages
148
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ISBN
9780989220293
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Language
English
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Genres
Reference / Personal & Practical Guides
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Yet public-policy philanthropy has special ways of mystifying and frustrating practitioners. It requires understanding of governmental practice, interpretation of human nature, and some philosophical perspective. Public-policy philanthropists may encounter opponents operating from different principles who view them as outright enemies. Moreover, public-policy struggles never seem to end: victories one year become defeats the next, followed by comebacks, then setbacks, and on and on.

This book was written to help donors navigate all of those obstacles. It draws on deep history, and rich interviews with the very best practitioners of ­­public-policy philanthropy in America today. Whatever your aspirations for U.S. society and governance, this guide will help you find the best ways to make a difference. 

Twenty-five years ago, charter schools hadn’t even been dreamed up. Today they are mushrooming across the country. There are 6,500 charter schools operating in 42 states, with more than 600 new ones opening every year. Within a blink there will be 3 million American children attending these freshly invented institutions (and 5 million students in them by the end of this decade). 

It is philanthropy that has made all of this possible. Without generous donors, charter schools could never have rooted and multiplied in this way. And philanthropists have driven relentless annual improvements—better trained school founders, more prepared teachers, sharper curricula, smarter technology—that have allowed charter schools to churn out impressive results.

Studies show that student performance in charter schools is accelerating every year, as high-performing models replace weaker ones. Charter schools as a whole already exceed conventional schools in results. The top charters that are now growing so fast elevate student outcomes more than any other schools in the U.S.—especially among poor and minority children.

Charter schooling may be the most important social innovation of our age, and it is just beginning to boom. Philanthropists anxious to improve America have more opportunities to make a difference through charter schools than in almost any other way. This book provides the facts, examples, cautionaries, inspiration, research, and practical experience that philanthropists will need as charter schooling shifts gears from promising experiment to mainstream movement bringing improved opportunity to millions of students.
The ascendancy of neo-liberalism in different parts of the world has put social democracy on the defensive. Its adherents lack a clear rationale for their policies. Yet a justification for social democracy is implicit in the United Nations Covenants on Human Rights, ratified by most of the worlds countries. The covenants commit all nations to guarantee that their citizens shall enjoy the traditional formal rights; but they likewise pledge governments to make those rights meaningful in the real world by providing social security and cultural recognition to every person.
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But can social democracy survive in a world characterized by pervasive processes of globalization? This book asserts that globalization need not undermine social democracy if it is harnessed by international associations and leavened by principles of cultural respect, toleration, and enlightenment. The structures of social democracy must, in short, be adapted to the exigencies of globalization, as has already occurred in countries with the most successful social-democratic practices.
Many modern Beowulf translations, while excellent in their own ways, suffer from what Kathleen Biddick might call "melancholy" for an oral and aural way of poetic making. By and large, they tend to preserve certain familiar features of Anglo-Saxon verse as it has been constructed by editors, philologists, and translators: the emphasis on caesura and alliteration, with diction and syntax smoothed out for readability. The problem with, and the paradox of this desired outcome, especially as it concerns Anglo-Saxon poetry, is that we are left with a document that translates an entire organizing principle based on oral transmission (and perhaps composition) into a visual, textual realm of writing and reading. The sense of loss or nostalgia for the old form seems a necessary and ever-present shadow over modern Beowulfs. What happens, however, when a contemporary poet, quite simply, doesn't bother with any such nostalgia? When the entire organizational apparatus of the poem--instead of being uneasily approximated in modern verse form--is itself translated into a modern organizing principle, i.e., the visual text? This is the approach that poet Thomas Meyer takes; as he writes, [I]nstead of the text's orality, perhaps perversely I went for the visual. Deciding to use page layout (recto/ verso) as a unit. Every translation I'd read felt impenetrable to me with its block after block of nearly uniform lines. Among other quirky decisions made in order to open up the text, the project wound up being a kind of typological specimen book for long American poems extant circa 1965. Having variously the "look" of Pound's Cantos, Williams' Paterson, or Olson or Zukofsky, occasionally late Eliot, even David Jones.
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