The Segs4Vets Program
Segs4Vets is an unprecedented grass-roots effort sustained and administered by volunteers representing grateful Americans, who passionately believe that when those serving our nation are sent into harm’s way, and suffer serious injury and permanent disability they must have every resource and tool available to them, which will allow them to fulfill their dreams and live the highest quality of life possible.
The program which made the first presentation in September 2005 to three recipients who sustained injuries in Operation Iraqi Freedom, was conceived and implemented with the assistance of Gen. Ralph "Ed" Eberhart, USAF (Ret), President of the Armed Forces Benefits Association.
Following its first presentation, the Segs4Vets program began the process of seeking a waiver which would allow the presentation of Segways to active-duty military personnel who had been severely injured and permanently disabled while serving in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.
In August 2006, the Segs4Vets program became the only recipient of a blanket waiver from the United States military, allowing a donation in excess of $1000 to active-duty military personnel.
In 2006, the program began setting up training and assessment programs at military medical centers which provided rehabilitative care for OEF, and OIF severely injured. Walter Reed Army Medical Center in February 2006, National Naval Medical Center in May 2006, Brooke Army Medical Center in November 2006 and the Naval Medical Center San Diego in November 2008.
In May 2006, Colonel William J. O'Brien, USMC (Ret),the Director of the Department of the Navy's Severely Injured Marines and Sailors Initiative (SIMS), a pilot program enacted under Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy HC "Barney" Barnum, to facilitate the full integration of injured servicemembers into the Marine Corps and Navy, or to assist in their transition into the private sector. They became aware of the Segs4Vets program, and the benefits that the Segway could provide to injured Marines, sailors, soldiers and airmen.
In July 2006, the small staff of the SIMS program, Colonel O'Brien, HMC Christine Jensen, USN, and Joseph Wade, began collaborating with the Segs4Vets program to encourage it to serve more OEF & OIF severely injured.
The results of this collaboration resulted in the first major Segs4Vets presentation ceremony on December 7, 2006 during a SIMS luncheon at the Army Navy Country Club in Arlington, Virginia. In May 2007, the SIMS program concluded its work having identified gaps in coverage for the severely injured and recommended solutions for those deficiencies, however, that first Segs4Vets presentation ceremony set a standard for future Segs4Vets ceremonies held twice annually in Washington, DC, San Antonio, Texas, and San Diego, California. Colonel O'Brien, HMC Jensen, Joe Wade, and now retired Secretary Barnum continue to play an active role in the Segs4Vets program.
Segs4Vets which only awarded 16 Segways through 2006, has as of January 2011, awarded more than 700 Segways, and was presented the Secretary of the Army’s Public Service Award for distinguished public service in providing outstanding support to our Nation’s Veterans.
A member of Military Family and Veterans Service Organizations of America, Segs4Vets has been certified as one of the best charities in America, by the Independent Charities of America. This honor is accorded to fewer than 2,000 of the more than one million public charities in the United States today.
Candidates for the Segs4Vets program have sustained injuries which have resulted in the amputation of one or both legs, extensive soft tissue and muscle injuries, traumatic burn injuries, spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injury, and other neurological injuries and disorders.
The Segs4Vets program provides successful candidates with a universally designed mobility device, not yet available through their present benefit package, which does not draw attention to their disability, while providing a more healthful psychological and physiological quality of life.
Each Segs4Vets recipient also receives a SegVator as part of their gift. The SegVator was created to enhance the usability and practicality of the Segway as a mobility solution. It allows the Segway to be loaded quickly and effortlessly, automatically securing it for transportation and charging its batteries while in route.
To apply for the Segs4Vets program.....Click Here
To make a Donation to the Segs4Vets program.....Click Here