Nobel Peace Prize Money Goes To…….

Great Choices and to orgs that won’t misuse!

Obama Donates Nobel Prize Money to 10 Charities

The White House has announced that President Obama has donated the $1.4 million given to him in conjunction with the Nobel Peace Prize to ten charities, including the Clinton-Bush Haiti Fund and the United Negro College Fund.

While President Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize last October for his work toward global peace, most of the money has gone toward charities focused not on peace but on educational opportunity.

The most money — $250,000 — went to Fisher House, which provides housing for families of patients being cared for at major military and VA medical centers. >>>>>

The list of charities includes:

The largest gift:

** $250,000 to Fisher House, a group that helps provide housing for families of patients receiving medical care at military and Veterans Affairs medical centers;

Supporting America’s military in their time of need, we provide “a home away from home”  that enables family members to be close to a loved one at the most stressful time — during hospitalization for an illness, disease or injury.

** $200,000 for the Clinton-Bush Haiti fund, which supports relief efforts in the earthquake-ravaged nation;

Thanks to your compassion and generosity, we have received more than 200,000 contributions for relief and recovery efforts. Together, we are making a difference for the people of Haiti.

** $125,000 for the College Summit, which helps prepare students for college,

College Summit is a national nonprofit organization that partners with schools and districts to strengthen college-going culture and increase college enrollment rates, so that all students graduate career and college-ready.

** $125,000 for the United Negro College Fund, which helps more than 60,000 students attend college annually.

At a time when a college degree is what a high school diploma was to previous generations, the minimum entry-level requirement for almost every well-paying career, UNCF plays a critical role in enabling more than 60,000 students each year to attend college and get the education they want and deserve.

Now along with the money to Fisher House and related issues of Veterans there has been a number of movements towards the positive, across the Country since this Administration came in and Especially picking Gen. Shinseki and who the General has brought into his administration:

VA Credits Partnerships for Drop in Homelessness Among Veterans

A DAV Department of Indiana volunteer serves a participant at an stand down event for homeless veterans in Indianapolis.

The number of Veterans homeless on a typical night dropped 18 percent as the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) entered the second year of its campaign to eliminate homelessness among Veterans within five years.

“It will take the dedication, creativity and hard work of many parts of American society to end homelessness among Veterans,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki. “But mostly it takes the resolve to say: It is unacceptable for a single Veteran to spend the night on the streets of America.”

VA’s Community Homeless Assessment Local Education and Networking Groups (CHALENG), which conducts a widely cited, annual census of homeless Veterans, estimated 107,000 Veterans were homeless each night last year. That figure was 131,000 in 2008 and 154,000 in 2007. >>>>>

Veteran Affairs CIO, Gets More Funding for 2011

President Obama proposed an IT budget of $3.3 billion for the VA Department for the fiscal year of 2011. Now the Senate panel has decided to add another 1% ($30 million) for fiscal 2011 for various projects. >>>>>

Shalala outlines benefits of new GI Bill

My guest is University of Miami President Donna Shalala, who explains the educational benefits offered by the new Post-9/11 GI Bill to military veterans and service members.

“You Served. Get Benefits.”

That’s the message of a new nationwide campaign kicked off last week by the Veterans Administration to help veterans and service members applying for the Post-9/11 GI Bill. When launching the campaign, Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki stated, “We won’t rest until all student veterans have received the education benefit they earned in defense of our nation.”  >>>>>

Focus on 200,000 Veterans Expected to File Claims under New Agent Orange Presumptives over Next Two Years

March 9, 2010

Secretary Seeks Fast Track to Process Claims

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced today an aggressive new initiative to solicit private-sector input on a proposed “fast track” Veterans’ claims process for service-connected presumptive illnesses due to Agent Orange exposure during the Vietnam War.  

“This will be a new way of doing business and a major step forward in how we process the presumptive claims we expect to receive over the next two years,” Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki said. “With the latest, fastest, and most reliable technology, VA hopes to migrate the manual processing of these claims to an automated process that meets the needs of today’s Veterans in a more timely manner.”

Over the next two years, about 200,000 Veterans are expected to file disability compensation claims under an historic expansion of three new presumptive illnesses announced last year by Secretary Shinseki.  They affect Veterans who have Parkinson’s disease, ischemic heart disease and B-cell leukemias.  

In practical terms, Veterans who served in Vietnam during the war and who have one of the illnesses covered by the “presumption of service connection” don’t have to prove an association between their medical problems and military service.  This “presumption” makes it easier for Vietnam Veterans to access disability compensation benefits. Vietnam Veterans are encouraged to submit their claims as soon as possible to begin the important process of compensation. >>>>>

They have revamped the VA website but you can read the press releases since Februay 2010 here. You have to search to get the back issues and there was a slew of them from the General coming in, the issues and the Congressional investigations and oversite can be found at the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs and the US Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee