Americanism Committee

 For the past three years the Americanism Committee has approved grants for Vets on Deck. This organization has a very unusual program - they take veterans sailing in Charleston Harbor. Many of the veterans are referrals from the Veterans Administration. VoD has two sailing vessels and they sail on average 5 time weekly year around. They have a group of veteran volunteers who perform maintenance and also serve as captains and first mates.

For veterans suffering from PTSD, social interaction may be very stressful. The Founders of VoD determined that a sailboat is the perfect location to hold gatherings for such veterans. Sailing can be a novel activity, sometimes stressful but most importantly, it requires working together as a team to make the boat go. Veterans on Deck does not provide traditional therapy or openly identify the diagnoses of the participants - being outdoors, among peers and engaging in the process of making the boat move are where the therapeutic benefits are found. VoD is helping many local veterans and the Exchange Club is proud to be a supporter.

Committee Chair      Ronald Schildge

Members: Jack Wilson, Jim Bannister; Bob Leggett, Larry Blasch