Veteran's Outreach
1933A Whitfield Park Loop
Sarasota FL 34243
Mission
Veterans' Outreach has the primary mission of honoring and serving all veterans.  Each veteran has unique needs that are identified through personal one-on-one interviews.  We endeavor to use our resources to offer a hand up, not a hand out; to benefit veterans and in turn communities and this great nation.
Leadership
CEO/Executive Director Mrs. Teri Neigh Ely
Board Chair John O. Ely
Board Chair Affiliation Veterans' Outreach Inc.
General Info
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Incorporation Year 1995
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes July 2017
State Registration Yes Apr 2017
Financial Summary
 
 
Projected Revenue $300,000.00
Projected Expenses $275,000.00
IRS Letter of Determination
IRS Letter of DeterminationView
Other Documents
Testimonials 2015View
TestimonialsView
Veteran Thank YouView
Dodsworth Family Thank YouView
Volunteers of AmericaView
Impact Statement
We have a saying, "Every day is Veterans' Day here".  We meet veterans daily that are in need.  We take calls, referrals from other veterans programs, and walk-ins that need our help.  It is heart wrenching to hear the painful circumstances that many veterans experience as a way of life.  Our Sarasota office has been a lifeline for veterans. 
 
We began publishing a weekly feature on our website and Facebook page called "Case of the Week" in an effort to shed light on the ways that we help make their problems less burdensome.  These cases come from all of our offices, but the Sarasota office supplies many of them.
 
One that stands out was when the mother of a female veteran contacted us.  Her daughter was in the hospital awaiting a bone marrow transplant.  The mother  has a low wage job and with the daughter incapacitated, the bills were really mounting up as they dealt with hospital incidentals and living expenses.  Their water utility was threatening shut off, with an overdue bill of $383.51.
 
Veterans' Outreach stepped in to alleviate that worry from the veteran suffering cancer, we paid the entire bill and kept the water on.  Both mother and daughter were ecstatic.  Although that is just one veteran, I hope you see the impact one case can make.  There have been dozens of equally compelling cases since then.
 
Our Sarasota office provided work for 41 veterans through our Workforce Program in 2015.   We provided Direct Aid to 472 veterans in the counties that we serve in 2015.
 
Veterans' Outreach was able to form alliances with eleven agencies that serve veterans to develop a  unified plan to secure the best possible solution for each veteran.
 
In 2016, our goal is to surpass all of the statistics from 2015.  We are on track to meet our goal of surpassing 2015;  from January 1, 2016 through June 23, 2016 we provided assistance to 197 veterans. 
 
We hope to be able to meet the needs of veterans with more substantial assistance  to eliminate veterans from the cycle of "deciding whether to buy food or pay the electric bill", as a veteran said to me just today. 
 
In 2016, we hope to secure grant funding for our Direct Aid services so that we can go beyond our "ceiling" for each veteran. 
Needs Statement
Veterans' Outreach is an organization that desires to grow in order to meet more of the needs of every veteran that comes to us. We are an organization in dire need of funding. Donors know, and as much as no one likes to admit it - everything revolves around funding. Our Sarasota office maintains a very tight budget. Our staff is dedicated to the mission, virtually all of our staff are volunteers or part time,  and those are compensated at Florida's minimum wage.  They believe in the cause and the legitimacy of Veterans' Outreach. 
  • Our Direct Aid Program is currently set at a maximum of $200 per veteran per year due to sustainability issues. That amount can very often eliminate a pressing matter, but so often more is needed.  Last month alone, veterans requested more than $14,000 through our Direct Aid Program. As required by our maximum per veteran, we were able to provide $6,700 of the more than $14,000 requested.  A donation of $200 could keep the power on for a veteran, or keep his car going for work purposes, or purchase food for his family - we aim to meet the most immediate need for every case.
  • Our office is furnished with minimal equipment. We are in need of a new computer. Cost for a new personal computer, software, and accessories would be approximately $700.00.
  • Our office rent and utilities for one month are approximately $1,200. A grant to cover those costs would allow us to use those funds for services to veterans.
Background Statement
Veterans' Outreach became a legal entity in January, 1994.  We celebrated 20 years of charitable work last year.  We started with one small office to currently five full service offices in several states.  We have been honored to meet and serve so many heroes.  We are humbled by the great sacrifices that men and women unselfishly make to protect our way of life.
 
We began helping veterans through our Workforce Program which provides employment to veterans that are unable to meet mainstream employment demands.  This is a way to meet our mission with a hand up, not a hand out.  Through the exposure that this program allows, we met many veterans desperate for basic survival needs and we began our Direct Aid Program which provides assistance based upon the veterans' most immediate need.  Although every veteran is unique, most often the needs are shelter, rent, utilities, clothing, auto repair, insurances, fuel, and food.
 
Our Florida office opened in 2003 with the help of Bob Goddard.  Bob became involved with Veterans' Outreach as an Adviser after he retired from business.  Bob is now deceased, but he gave the last few years of life to Veterans' Outreach as his way of memorializing his brother George whose plane went down in WWII.   A wonderful reunion happened when George's fiance` from before he left for duty googled Bob Goddard's name.  Our website had done a story on Bob and George.  George's fiance` contacted us and the connection was made.  She was able to visit her first love's brother and give him photos that she had saved for all those years.
 
Several years ago, we were blessed to meet a veteran named Robert Graham who is now our esteemed Regional Manager for the Sarasota office.  Prior to making Sarasota his home, Bob his work took him to many countries.  He knows the great majesty of America - he has had the opportunity to personally compare nations.  Now, in his retirement years, he has devoted his life to Veterans' Outreach and the mission of reaching out to veterans, with most assistance requests coming from Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, and DeSoto counties.   Through his leadership, Veterans' Outreach has become a real beacon of hope for many veterans.  His passion for the work is amazing, he tirelessly strives to meet the call of duty each day.  He personally speaks with every veteran that contacts us to determine the best solution, when the case is completed, he calls the veteran again to let them know what we were able to do for them.
Areas Served
Areas Served
Area
FL- Charlotte
FL- DeSoto
FL- Hardee
FL- Hillsborough
FL- Lee
FL- Manatee
FL-Pinellas
FL- Sarasota
Areas Served Comments
Veterans' Outreach has been able to provide assistance to veterans in the following areas:
  • In Sarasota County:  Sarasota, Venice, Englewood, North Port, and Myakka City.
  • In Manatee County:  Bradenton, Parrish, Palmetto, Ellenton, Tallevast, and Cortez.
  • In Charlotte County:  Punta Gorda, Englewood (shared with Sarasota County), Port Charlotte, and Rotunda.
  • DeSoto County:  Arcadia
  • Volusia County:  Daytona Beach
  • Brevard County:  Melbourne
  • Washington County
  • Miami/Dade County
  • Hendry County
  • Hernando County
  • Osceola County
  • Pasco County
Service Categories
Primary Org Type Public & Societal Benefit
Secondary Org Type Human Services
Tertiary Org Type Human Services
Statement from the Board Chair/Board President

My name is John O. Ely, I am the founder of Veterans' Outreach.  The organization is now 22 years old.  I had no idea that it would grow into the life-changing program that it has become, helping tens of thousands of veterans along the way,  and without one penny from government grants.

I have always had a passion to serve others, even though my education is in Air/Water Technology and Music.  Many years ago, I had gone to San Francisco for an automotive aftermarket convention.  The big wake up call for me was not about the latest innovations for cars, but how our cities and towns were plagued with our heroes living on the streets, alleys, or under bridges.  What happened to the "amber waves of grain" and "purple mountain majesty"?  That depressed and haunted me.  I couldn't get the picture of the homeless heroes standing side by side along the trolley routes out of my mind.  I made a point to visit with them, even witnessed a large American Indian leaning up against a building with a blanket covering himself.  The next day I found out that he had served in the Army. 

My father had served in the Army during WWII, he was a medic at Pearl Harbor on the day the bombs fell.  My brother served with boots on the ground in Vietnam.  One day soon after my experience in San Francisco, I told a friend about it.  He had just met and then introduced me to a Korean Veteran that was very ill, but had a passion to help his fellow veterans.  Through our meetings, he helped me move forward with establishing Veterans' Outreach with a 501(c)(3) determination.   

Getting established and developing from nothing - to look back now, I don't know how I did it, but by the grace of God and a lot of help from others.  The board, the contacts, the services, the fund raising, and so many other elements are crucial to the survival of a non-profit. 

Today, 22 years later, we have 5 full service offices, over 120 employees and volunteers - all united with the one mission - to help veterans with a hand up, not a hand out.  We have thank you letters from officials, including a United States Senator, an award from the Ohio Attorney General's office, and numerous testimonials from veterans.  Our social media has taken off with our Facebook page having over 15,000 followers.

With all that being said; yes, I am proud of Veterans' Outreach and so blessed by all of the great people that share my passion.  I have so much more that I want to do for the veterans of this country. 

We are challenged to stay afloat, always pressing forward so that our costs are met and the assistance requests are approved.  We want to do so much more, to see that no veteran suffers the humiliation of homelessness.   

Statement from the CEO/Executive Director
We are a unique service organization comprised of veterans and non-veterans, all sharing the common goal to serve and honor veterans. We care for all veterans, whether from WWII or the current situations of today and everything in between.  We don't operate a club, we operate offices for assistance to veterans.
 
As the Executive Director, I work from our corporate home office in Ohio.  Veterans' Outreach has several offices that are independent in daily activities, but under the umbrella of our national filings.  Our entire organization's main goal is to serve and honor veterans.  An important part of that goal is keeping our administrative costs down by maintaining an attitude of what I describe as "many hats".  Each office has a Regional Manager and a small administrative team.  Each office is required to raise funds to meet the needs of their office, both service and management related costs.  Funds raised stay in the area. I couldn't be more pleased with the result oriented mindset of the Sarasota team.  They are hard-working, responsible, and driven to serve.
 
Veterans contact us daily with problems concerning housing, utilities, auto repair, and a host of other needs.  For the majority of cases, we are able to provide some kind of immediate relief.  Due to our streamlined attitude, we are known for being quickly responsive and eliminating red tape.  
 
We see it as very, very basic.  These fine Americans served our country, and we owe them.  We owe them our respect, gratitude, and support.  So, though a veteran has now left active service, we will not ignore them when they have problems - they did not abandon us, we will not abandon them.
Programs
Description
The Direct Aid Program is our way of touching a veterans' life with assistance for their most immediate need.  Veterans come to us from a variety of sources ranging from our Workforce Program, our website, word of mouth, and referrals from other agencies that aren't able to provide help.  The veteran must provide proof of service, proof of residency, and proof of need.  With those tools, Veterans' Outreach takes the initiative to verify, and then submit payment made payable to the most pressing need. 
 
Although this program addresses the most immediate need, we work with other like-minded agencies through referrals to go beyond the call to enhance the veterans' lives further to establish real solutions on a long term basis.   
Budget $85,000
Category Human Services, General/Other Services for Specific Populations
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults US US
Short Term Success Short -term success is immediately achieved when the veterans' needs are met.  For example, we help a veteran with getting his drivers' license, he is then able to search for jobs.  We help a veteran with keeping his utilities on, he is then able to focus on other sectors of his life to help his family.  We help a veteran with purchasing fresh food (non-perishables are widely available through food banks and churches), he is then able to provide wholesome nutrition for himself and his family.
Long Term Success
The Direct Aid Program stabilizes a veterans' life by meeting the most immediate need.  Very often, the veteran is transitioning from military to civilian life which can be a long process, depending upon the length and type of service that the veteran engaged in. 
 
We provide the safety net while other existing programs train veterans  and/or enhance skill sets to enable and encourage long term success through maintaining employment.
Program Success Monitoring Our office completes a request of services for every veteran.  All verifying documentation is attached to that application.  We keep these files long term.  We monitor the success of the program by entering all services rendered on a monthly basis to a spreadsheet.  We do comparative analyses on a monthly and annual basis.
Program Success Examples
We are proud of this program's success.  It is evidenced by letters of appreciation from other agencies and individual veterans notes of thank that can be found in Other Documents.
 
To quote a letter from Jennifer Fissette of Volunteers of America from September 4, 2012:  "I am writing this letter to thank you for your generous donations . . . for the homeless veterans . . . imperative so that veterans can begin to transition back to living in society and learn to maintain their dwellings and personal hygiene."
 
To quote an article titiled "A way to give back" from the August 13, 2012 edition of the North Port Sun:   "With the help of . . .  the Veterans' Outreach effort here in North Port, I was just recently able to acquire some housing . . . and I was able to get some furniture as well."
 
Description
The Workforce Program provides employment for veterans that are unable to maintain employment in mainstream society for various reasons.  Problems with attendance, grooming, communication skills, and the like are addressed.  Some veterans involved with this program are disabled with physical and/or mental problems, often as a result of their time in the service of this nation.
 
The Workforce Program serves a tri-fold purpose.  It provides employment during a transition period, or long term supplemental income.  It provides awareness of our services to veterans that hadn't otherwise known of us.  It provides a source of income for the organization to fund the Direct Aid Services Program.
Budget $150,000
Category Employment, General/Other Employment, General/Other
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adults Adults Adults
Short Term Success Short term success is achieved when a veteran that we employ through the Workforce Program is able to establish the basic needs of life that are lacking such as food, shelter, and clothing and continue the transition to long term employment.
Long Term Success
The long-term success of this program is measured by the number of veterans involved.  Each year, the number of veterans employed has increased.  In 2014, there were 21 veterans in the Workforce Program and in 2015, there were 24 veterans actively involved with the Workforce Program.  The ideal result is achieved when we are able to employ a veteran part time while he/she pursues education or training for employment in a field of choice.
 
Program Success Monitoring The success of the Workforce Program is monitored through the detailed work records for each veteran.  Timesheets are kept on a daily basis for every veteran.  They are used to guage timeliness or tardiness, levels of productivity, social interaction with co-workers and the public at large.  Weekly meetings are held between workforce participants and administrative personnel to discuss progress with various personal issues that the veteran might be dealing with.
Program Success Examples The Workforce Program is successful when all financial demands of the office are met.  It is a major source of fundraising.
Comments
Program Comments by Organization
We are very proud of the fact that we have been able to increase the numbers of veterans that we serve in both of our major programs.  One program serves the other, and thus are intimately intertwined with one another.  We often describe the programs as a two-sided coin, both sides are equally important. 
 
The Workforce Program enhances awareness and provides revenue to support the Direct Aid Services.  We use those funds to provide Direct Aid Services to veterans. 
 
It is challenging to overcome questions of legitimacy because of many other veterans groups that have turned out to be con-artists pocketing the funds they raise.  We have learned that the best defense against questions of legitimacy is to stay the course, and continue to do the right thing.
 
It is challenging to receive grants for our programs because donors are often not well informed of the real core problems.  We have seen that the majority of funders are very interested in helping veterans, but only want to support programs that on paper seem like great long term solutions.  For example, there are many training programs that are funded by government and private grants.  We all want to see a veteran achieve the American Dream.  We have seen other organizations receive large grants for programs aimed at eliminating problems with homelessness and unemployment, which is a cause that we all support.  We considered formulating a program that would meet the criteria that donors are looking for, but we don't want to duplicate the services of other agencies. We are the safety net for the veteran during the training programs.  We are there to assist with the most immediate needs as they develop their future plans.
 
It is gratifying to know that we have been vigilant, and to know that we have been successful.  Evidence of our success is our very existence, and the growing number of veterans that we have helped.
 
CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director Mrs. Teri Neigh Ely
CEO Term Start June 2001
CEO/Executive Director Email tely@veteransoutreach.org
Experience
Teri Neigh Ely earned her degree in Business Management.  She has been involved with Veterans' Outreach since its inception.   Prior to Veterans' Outreach, she was the administrator of a personal care complex that included an Alzheimer Research Center.
 
Teri began on the ground floor with organizing our first office with the creation of forms that document  a verifiable paper trail for all revenue, expenses, and services rendered.  She has successfully taken the organization through audits with the Internal Revenue Service, and various state agencies.  All questions are answered and have original source documents to keep the paper trail very neat and clean.
 
Her expertise has really been developed by years of experience and her natural instincts and talents.  Her work ethic is uncompromising, and she asks for nothing less from the staff at each office.  Her communication skills have developed long-standing mutually respectful relationships with all of the employees.  She oversees the entire organization, and maintains close contact and collaboration with the Sarasota office.
 
Teri is known to "wear many hats".   She always fulfills her obligations to the many demands of the job, and doesn't mind taking on more.  She knows and understands priorities and strives to make the company stronger which ultimately benefits the veterans that we serve.
Former CEOs/Executive Directors
NameTerm
Senior Staff
NameTitle
Mr. Robert Graham Regional Manager for Veterans' Outreach of Florida
Staff & Volunteer Statistics
Full Time Staff 1
Part Time Staff 19
Staff Retention Rate % 100
Professional Development No
Contractors 0
Volunteers 2
Management Reports to Board Yes
CEO/Executive Director Formal Evaluation No
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non-Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Collaborations
Veterans' Outreach collaborates with several local agencies to develop the best solution for all veterans that we serve.  We have received referrals from Bay Pines V. A. Hospital, now known as C.W. Bill Young, James A. Haley V. A. Hospital, Turning Point, Goodwill in Bradenton, Jewish Family Services Center of Sarasota and Manatee, Boley Center in St. Petersburg, Veterans Service Office of Manatee, Sarasota, and Naples, and Grace Point Mental Health of Tampa, Harvest House, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Vincent De Paul, and Salvation Army.  These fine agencies all refer and work with us.
External Assessments and Accreditations
Assessment/AccreditationYear
Risk Management Provisions
Commercial General Liability
Workers Compensation and Employers' Liability
Workplace Violence
Government Licenses
Organization Licensed by the Government No
Plans
Fundraising Plan No
Communication Plan No
Strategic Plan No
Strategic Plan Years
Strategic Plan Adopted 0
Management Succession Plan No
Continuity of Operations Plan No
Policies
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy No
Policies and Procedures No
Comments
Management Comments by Organization As the Executive Director of Veterans' Outreach I oversee all regions, including the Sarasota office.  The Sarasota office is not financially committed to the salary of an Executive Director.  We have organized Veterans' Outreach to cut administrative costs.
Multi-Media Comments by Organization
Our website, veteransoutreach.org is a user friendly informative site.  It enables the visitor to learn about us and to contact us if desired.  We added a section in the last few months that we call our "Case of the Week".  It was inspired through talking with a concerned veteran that had viewed our sites many times.  He was interested in knowing more about what we do and how we do it, not just numbers helped.  We thought it was a great idea.  So, we publish a new case each week detailing the situation and how we were able to help, but not the identification of the veteran.
 
 Our Facebook page is very popular.  We have approximately 11,000 "likes".  We have continuous updates of events going on local to our offices and nationwide that affect our veterans and our patriotic spirit.  
Board Chair
Board Chair John O. Ely
Company Affiliation Veterans' Outreach Inc.
Board Term Jan 1998 to Dec 2016
Board Chair Email jely@veteransoutreach.org
Board Members
Board Members
NameAffiliation
John Ely Veterans' Outreach
Robert Julian Julco Entertainment
Darlene Pavlock Retired, Executive Director of Home Savings Bank Foundation
Thomas Price Price Computax
Larry Steiner General Motors retiree, Girard City Councilman retired,
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes
Board Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 5
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Gender
Male 4
Female 1
Unspecified 0
Governance
Board Term Lengths 1
Board Term Limits 99
Board Orientation Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 4
Board Meeting Attendance % 80
Board Self-Evaluation Yes
Written Board Selection Criteria Yes
Board Conflict of Interest Policy Yes
% of Board Making Monetary Contributions 80
% of Board Making In-Kind Contributions 80
Comments
Governance Comments by Organization
Veterans' Outreach has a dedicated Board.  Each member has a heart for the veterans of this country and donates much time to the needs of the organization.  We are in the process of expanding the board to include more professionals with expertise in fields that we often need guidance in. 
Overall, we are a multi-state organization, which makes governance challenging.  Each region has a unique population and mindset.  Each region presents situations that require solutions that are often successful only in that particular region.
 
We hope to be in a position to encourage more local involvement from professionals that are willing to donate a portion of their time to help the needs of their local Veterans' Outreach office.
Fiscal Year Projections
Fiscal Year Begins 2016
Fiscal Year Ends 2016
Projected Revenue $300,000.00
Projected Expenses $275,000.00
Organization has Endowment No
Capital Campaign
Currently In a Capital Campaign No
Campaign Purpose
Campaign Goal
Campaign Dates 0 to 0
Amount Raised To Date 0 as of 0
Historical Financial Review
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$201,073$265,799$159,106
Administration Expense$43,696$19,892$53,035
Fundraising Expense$0$0$0
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.031.011.05
Program Expense/Total Expenses82%93%75%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue0%0%0%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$0$0$9,676
Current Assets$0$0$9,676
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$0$0$0
Total Net Assets$0$0$9,676
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201520142013
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, gifts, grants $244,335Contributions, gifts, grants $287,891Contributions, gifts, grants $221,816
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountFoundation & Corporate Support $7,500Refund $3340 $0
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount0 $00 $00 $0
CEO/Executive Director Compensation $0 - $50,000
Tax Credits No
Solvency
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities------
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets----0%
Financials Comments
Financial Comments by Organization
The Sarasota office of Veterans' Outreach has been a lifeline for hundreds of veterans in several counties surrounding Sarasota through our "Outreach Program" and referrals from other agencies.  However, we are unable to meet the needs presented to us due to an ever decreasing base of fundraising. 
 
We participated in the Giving Challenge for the first time in 2015.  We are so grateful for the opportunity, but we were disappointed in the number of supporters that came forward during the Challenge. We were not successful in reaching an audience of veteran supporters in spite of the great numbers of veterans helped.  Those that know of us are the ones that we have helped, and obviously don't have resources to make a donation to the challenge.  It was a learning experience.
 
Going forward, we plan to reach out to the public well in advance of the challenge via several forms of media including PSA's through radio, television, and print.  We plan to develop an online list of supporters including referring agency employees, local retail outlets employees, and previous donors.  We will reach out to them on a regular basis when the challenge draws near to raise awareness of the event and our cause.
 
 
Financial Comments by Foundation Financial information prior to 2011 taken from the Federal 990, which is filed at the National level.  Starting with 2011, financial information has been provided at the local state level. No balance sheet information at the local level is available for 2014 and 2015.
Nonprofit Veteran's Outreach
Address 1933A Whitfield Park Loop
Sarasota, FL 44505
Phone 941 755-1305

THE COMMUNITY FOUNDATION OF SARASOTA COUNTY, INC. IS A REGISTERED 501(C)(3) NON-PROFIT CORPORATION. A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE WITHIN THE STATE (1-800-HELP-FLA) OR FROM THE WEBSITE: WWW.FRESHFROMFLORIDA.COM. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE. ONE HUNDRED PERCENT (100%) OF EACH CONTRIBUTION IS RECEIVED BY THE COMMUNITY FOUNDATION OF SARASOTA COUNTY. REGISTRATION #SC-02471.