Meritor announced today (June 15) it made a $50,000 contribution to the Boise, Idaho-based Wyakin Warrior Foundation, which mentors and gives financial assistance to veterans who are pursuing degrees in many areas, including engineering, business, law, criminal justice, education and computer science.
In January, Meritor launched its “Shoes for Soldiers” campaign, which earmarked a percentage of its remanufactured brake shoe sales to the foundation. Meritor’s contribution includes a $20,000 match from the Meritor Trust Fund.
“It’s important to assist wounded veterans who have the motivation but lack the education and training to become leaders in business, government and community,” said Tim Bauer, director, remanufacturing for Meritor. “These men and women have made tremendous sacrifices for us, and they’ve earned the kind of developmental assistance Wyakin offers.”
Meritor’s contribution will provide funding to Wyakin Warriors for additional veterans. The cost of the 60-month Wyakin Warrior program is $25,000 per veteran.
“Meritor has a long history of supporting the U.S. military, and we designed ‘Shoes for Soldiers’ to help the Wyakin Warrior Foundation fulfill its mission of positioning severely wounded veterans for success,” said Krista Sohm, vice president, Marketing & Communications for Meritor, Inc.
Participants in the Wyakin Warrior program receive educational and financial support, attend monthly professional development seminars, build job skills and a professional network and successfully complete a certification or degree, culminating in job placement in a meaningful career.
“We’re so grateful to Meritor for this contribution,” said Roy Ledesma, director of operations, Wyakin Warrior Foundation. “It’s definitely going to impact these warriors in a positive way by assisting them in their transition from the battlefield to successful careers. It’ll have a direct impact on the lives of these heroes and their families.”
Ledesma said more than 52,000 military service personnel have been injured since the 9/11 attacks on Washington, D.C. and New York City. Now in its fifth year, the foundation focuses on the most severely injured or ill who face the greatest challenges in building a successful civilian life. Twenty-six veterans are supported by the Wyakin Warrior program.
A “wyakin,” according to Native American legend, is a spiritual guide who advises and protects a person throughout life.