The Purple Heart has a noble heritage. It is the oldest award still given to combat-wounded veterans of the U.S. military. Established by George Washington in 1782 and originally called the Merit Badge, the Purple Heart has been awarded nearly two million times to recognize the sacrifice and commitment of combat-wounded veterans.


The Military Order of the Purple Heart is a congressionally-chartered veterans’ organization whose members have been awarded the Purple Heart medal. The Order provides opportunities for engagement, camaraderie and support among Purple Heart recipients, but its mission is far larger than that, encompassing programs that aid all veterans.


Chartered in 1957, the Military Order of the Purple Heart Service Foundation is the fundraising engine of the Military Order of the Purple Heart. Through grants and outreach programs we lend support to other organizations whose programs align with Purple Heart’s mission, as well as make smaller direct contributions to veterans facing exceptionally difficult financial challenges.


In combat, warriors count on their comrades to have their backs.  Yet when they return home, when they face new and daunting challenges – emotional, medical, financial and more – who is there for them? Who has their back then? The answer is we do, providing counsel, a wide range of support, and unwavering advocacy. And a good measure of love.


  • Programs that help all veterans recover and prosper.
  • Research and assistance that tackle the unseen wounds impacting veterans, things like Post Traumatic Stress (PTS), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), suicide, and sexual abuse.
  • The National Service Officers program that exists to inform veterans about education opportunities, scholarships, disability compensation, employment training, hospitalization and rehabilitation benefits, pensions, and other assistance.
  • A full-time attorney dedicated to protecting the interests of wounded servicemen and women and presenting veterans’ claims before a court.
  • Legislative advocacy for policies impacting veterans.