The nation which forgets its defenders will itself be forgotten.
- President Calvin Coolidge
The experiences of war leave an indelible impact on our servicemen and women. As they return to civilian life, the physical, emotional and psychological challenges they face are often difficult. As citizens, supporting the heroes who defend our nation is a responsibility we can share. We are all beneficiaries of the freedom and security they fight to protect.
The Gary Sinise Foundation was established under the philanthropic direction of a forty-year advocate for our nation's defenders, actor Gary Sinise. Its outreach supports those who sacrifice to defend our country: active duty, veterans, first responders, and their loved ones. While our mission is broad, we've created nine key programs to show gratitude for our American heroes through entertainment, family support, and acts of appreciation.
The Gary Sinise Foundation builds specially adapted smart homes for America’s severely wounded veterans through its R.I.S.E. program (Restoring Independence Supporting Empowerment). Each home features automated amenities to ease the daily challenges these heroes face. In addition, R.I.S.E provides adapted vehicles, mobility devices, and home modifications to injured, wounded, ill and/or aging heroes from all conflicts.
For more than a decade, Gary Sinise & the Lt. Dan Band have toured the globe in support of our troops. As a program of the Foundation, the band is raising spirits and awareness for military and first responder causes worldwide.
Through its Invincible Spirit Festivals, the Gary Sinise Foundation is boosting the morale at military medical centers across the country. These daylong celebrations provide a respite from the rigors of rehabilitation for the hospital’s patients, staff, and families. The Relief & Resiliency Outreach program is providing complete support to those recovering from trauma, injury and loss during times of urgent need. The Foundation is also providing financial support and training to America’s firefighters, police departments and EMTs through its First Responders Outreach program.
Additionally, the Gary Sinise Foundation is showing appreciation through Serving Heroes, a program providing hearty, classic American meals to our defenders across the country. It's a special way to remind them that they are on our minds and that we appreciate their service. The Arts & Entertainment Outreach program now includes the Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago and the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. Each theatre provides dinner and a performance to local veterans free of charge.
Through our Ambassador Council we're sending representatives to inspire, educate, and remind communities to recognize their local veterans and to remember the sacrifices made by all of American defenders.
In 2015, the Gary Sinise Foundation launched Soaring Valor with The National WWII Museum and American Airlines. The program provides WWII veterans a chance to visit the museum and supports documenting their first-hand accounts of the war on video for future generations.
The Gary Sinise Foundation works to ensure the sacrifices of America’s defenders and their families are never forgotten.