1974
2024

50

Years of Vets Helping Vets

Half a century of empowering veterans, building peace, and promoting healing.

OUR STORY

WE'RE TURNING 50!

It's our 50th year at Swords to Plowshares! This milestone isn't just about celebrating our history; it's about the people, stories, and achievements that have brought us here. Together, we've made a real difference in veterans' lives, and as we look ahead, we're inspired to keep this mission going.

OUR UPDATED VALUES

Our VALUES SET 
US APART

About our mission statement
Our Mission

War causes wounds and suffering that last beyond the battlefield. Swords to Plowshares' mission is to support veterans as they navigate the challenges of post-military life, and to prevent and end veteran homelessness through wrap-around care and informed advocacy.

Our Vision

All veterans will have access to the care and services they need to achieve health, housing, wellness and stability.

Our Philosophy

Our philosophy of care recognizes that veteran homelessness, instability, institutional racism, and systemic oppression are interrelated and require an integrated network of support.

VISION FOR IMPACT

Our Journey Forward

Curious about what the future holds for Swords to Plowshares?Check out our Vision for Impact to see the future we're building for veterans. It's not just a plan—it's a commitment to make a real difference. Your support can help bring this vision to life. Take a peek, get inspired, and join us in shaping a brighter future. Let's create lasting change together!

OUR STORY

Our History

1970s
The Decade of Neglect

Fifty years ago, a group of Vietnam veterans united to address the unmet needs of their peers, becoming leaders in the veterans’ rights movement. From these humble beginnings, Swords to Plowshares emerged with an inclusive model, determined to serve all veterans -reaching out to them at campuses, jails, and on the streets. A Valencia Street storefront became the Drop-in Center, offering veterans assistance in finding jobs, securing disability compensation, connecting to VA care, and fostering camaraderie. Since then, Swords to Plowshares has evolved into a national voice for veterans while proudly maintaining a community-based approach.

1974

Swords is established by six Vietnam veterans concerned with the unmet needs of their peers within the community and VA

1976

Swords develops tailored services for military discharge upgrades, working with incarcerated veterans and providing employment, training and educational assistance

1978

Swords becomes the first organization in 32 years certified by the VA to represent veterans seeking benefits

1979

Swords wins one of the first PTSD cases in the country

MeET Our founder

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1/2
Remembering Jack Mccloskey

Learn more about our founding leader here.

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1980s
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