How We Help

Supporting America’s military and veteran kids around the globe.

Home for the holidays: Last soldiers redeploy to Fort Bragg from Iraq
Gratitude Initiative works with America’s military and veteran families at no cost to them, providing parents and their children from 8th grade through college graduation with the tools and programs that are proven to put young people on the path to educational and career success.

It’s not just about scholarships. It’s about preparing students for their future, equipping them with the right tools and skills to get there, and staying with them until they graduate from college.


Programs and Services

GI’s activities include:

  • Provide free college planning and academic support services to military and veteran children.
  • Award college scholarships to students participating in our programs to attend college or technical school.
  • Raise awareness of the challenges faced by military and veteran households.

Just 1% of our population serves in our military to protect all of us, our nation, and our freedoms.

Who We Serve

Our students come from the families of…

  • Active duty members 45th Infantry Brigade Combat Team Homecomingof the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard.
  • Reserve or National Guard members who were activated for active duty service since 9/11/01 and were deployed to a combat zone.
  • A Veteran who was honorably discharged from active duty on or after 9/11/2001.
  • A Combat wounded or disabled veteran with a service connected injury that occurred on or after 9/11/2001.
  • A Service member who was killed in the line of duty.

Educational Support
Scholarships are nice, but there’s an even better way to help…

Military kids are tough, but sometimes everyone can use an extra hand. They change schools often due to their parents changing duty stations or deployments, which can cause them to fall behind in school. Many times a child’s academic performance suffers when a parent deploys to a combat zone or is recovering from combat related wounds or injuries.

We provide much more than just scholarships. Thanks to our generous donors, The Gratitude Initiative provides GI Kids™ with free essential college planning and academic support services that begins as early as the 8th grade and continues through to college graduation–services that would be cost prohibitive for most families.

GI’s College Success Academy – Open to junior high and high school students, the College Success Academy is a comprehensive college-planning program providing students and their parents with the tools and guidance they need to navigate the college landscape regardless of where they are stationed in the United States or abroad. The program is delivered online, and supported by live, degreed counselors that families connect with via phone, email, or chat. This ensures that GI Kids are equipped to attend and graduate from the college of their dreams.

GI enrolls qualified students from 8th grade through the first semester of the 12th grade with an easy to use online college and career prep program that includes:

  • A step-by-step program that reduces family stress and anxiety
  • Expert college and career counseling
  • A team of advisors to guide the family every step of the way
  • Help with admission and financial aid processes
  • Test prep for the PSAT®, SAT®, and ACT®
  • Making sure each student is college-ready
  • Help to maximize each student’s scholarship and financial aid opportunities
  • Student and parent support through college graduation

Click here to begin the application process.

College Scholarships

GI helps to provide college scholarships to students who complete the College Success Academy and are enrolled to attend an accredited university or vocational/technical school.

Raise Awareness and Provide Support

Military children are a tough group, but they’ve been asked to carry an unprecedented burden.  Military children suffer from anxiety and emotional difficulties at rates that are higher than the national average.  The impact of our extended wartime footing and repeat deployments on military children is still not fully understood.

GI provides quality support to the teens of military and veteran families as well as to their parents to help them cope with their unique challenges.

Raise awareness and provide support - Learn More

As a service member deploys, his or her entire family goes to war. Since 2001, our military has maintained an operational tempo that is unprecedented. Many service members have made numerous deployments to combat zones with little quality time at home between combat tours. The unique nature of the current combat environments creates new stressors on service members not only while they are deployed, but also when they return home.

GI provides support to military and veteran families to help them cope with the unique challenges they face when their kids are in their teens. GI partners with other military family advocates, non-profits, and universities to improve counseling, offer encouragement, and connect them to the right resources to help these patriot families.

Questions about GI’s Educational Programs?  See the Educational Program’s section of FAQ Page or if you have a unique question or issue, please email us at