Today kicks off the annual Valour-IT fundraiser to get laptops with specific software capabilities into the hands of our Wounded Warriors. This year, we are leading the kick-off again, and Blackfive is leading Team Army with over 40 other sites.
For those of you not familiar with Valour-IT, here is a short history of what it is:
Project Valour-IT began when Captain Charles "Chuck" Ziegenfuss was wounded by an IED while serving as commander of a tank company in Iraq in June 2005.
During his deployment he kept a blog (an online personal diary, opinion forum, or news analysis site-called a milblog or military weblog when written by a servicemember or about military subjects). Captivating writing, insightful stories of his experiences, and his self-deprecating humor won him many loyal readers. After he was wounded, his wife continued his blog, keeping his readers informed of his condition.
As he began to recover, CPT Ziegenfuss wanted to return to writing his blog, but serious hand injuries hampered his typing. When a loyal and generous reader gave him a copy of the Dragon Naturally Speaking Preferred software, other readers began to realize how important such software could be to CPT Ziegenfuss' fellow wounded soldiers and started cast about for a way to get it to them.
A fellow blogger (blog author) who writes under the pseudonym FbL contacted Captain Ziegenfuss and the two realized they shared a vision of providing laptops with voice-controlled software to wounded soldiers whose injuries prevented them from operating a standard computer. FbL contacted Soldiers Angels, who offered to help develop the project, and Project Valour-IT was born.
In sharing their thoughts, CPT Ziegenfuss (now a Major) and FbL found that memories of their respective fathers were a motivating factor in their work with the project. Both continue their association with this project in memory of the great men in their lives whose fine examples taught them lasting lessons of courage and generosity.
In the years since its founding in 2005, the project has acted to meet emerging needs and its mission of supporting the the severely wounded has expanded. In addition to voice-controlled laptops, Valour-IT now helps provide active and whole-body video games such as Wii Sports, which is used to great effect in physical therapy, and personal GPS systems that help compensate for short-term memory loss and organizational/spacial challenges common in those with brain injuries.
Valour-IT has 4 teams- Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines. The software and hardware afforded to the wounded thru this effort allows our wounded to access the internet, write family, and basically function online in ways they could never imagine before. I've used this stuff, seen how it works, and it's TRULY amazing.
This year, Team Army would like to raise $250,000 dollars in order to help 250 wounded get the software they need and the laptop required. The VALOUR-IT goal is over a million dollars to help over 1,000 wounded- with this kind of purchasing power we can get discounts that afford more software and more hardware. This is theraputic as well as functional help for our wounded. DONATE NOW to the team of your choice (but hey, this is a plug for TEAM ARMY, huh?).
Help us get this moving! DONATE NOW to TEAM ARMY!
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