Recently, Operation Homefront informed you that it discovered a discrepancy related to documentation regarding an in-kind contribution, for which Operation Homefront took prompt, thorough, transparent and accountable action. As part of our commitment to transparency and disclosure, we immediately reported our actions to you, our supporters, with an open letter on our website. This is exactly the kind of response the public should expect from responsible non-profits when a situation like this is discovered. We wanted to update you on the measures that we have taken.
Since our initial disclosure of the situation, there were several news article published about the situation. One inaccurate news article was later corrected. However, it prompted Charity Navigator, a respected donor advocacy and rating agency, to replace our 4-star rating with a Donor Advisory on its website related to this matter. We respect Charity Navigator’s intent to provide donors with a clear picture of all charities it rates, and with this summary we wish to clarify matters that, absent context, might concern donors.
The discrepancy involved some donated goods received by Operation Homefront, and subsequently donated to a third-party nonprofit organization that sometimes serves veterans and wounded warriors. Through our swift and thorough investigation of this matter and with the assistance of a former employee, we verified that all the donated items in question are accounted for, and we have subsequently received a valid letter from the other nonprofit acknowledging the donation.
Although we discovered this situation internally through existing processes and procedures, we have instituted additional procedures for the identification, inventory control and prior approval of all donations by Operation Homefront to third-party nonprofit organizations. These additional procedures require independent verification of a nonprofit’s eligibility to receive such donations per IRS guidelines; and a requirement that any such donations be approved in advance by at least two Operation Homefront leaders, one of which must be a Vice President or above, to ensure that the recipient’s operation aligns with the core mission of Operation Homefront. Essentially, we have made already strong internal controls even stronger, complementing swift detection protocols in our internal controls with a powerful deterrent. We are confident these additional steps will help to prevent a similar situation in the future.
Operation Homefront is continuing to serve military families at their times of greatest need. Particularly for the families of the wounded, ill and injured, that need is greater than ever.
We believe strongly that our ethical, responsible, and accountable actions regarding this situation will serve to reassure our donors and our partners that Operation Homefront is, has always been, and will continue to be committed to the highest standards of transparency and integrity in meeting the emergency financial and other assistance needs of our military families and wounded warriors.
- Operation Homefront