September 10, 2021

Remembering September 11th and Its Legacy

Author National Philanthropic Trust

Twenty years have passed since the tragic events of September 11th, 2001. In the days, months, and years after the attacks, Americans united in shared grief and mourning, but also in hope. They came together to engage in charitable giving, volunteerism and a renewed desire to connect with, and help, one another.

During this time, NPT facilitated ongoing charitable giving for its donors, including establishing and managing the September 11th Children’s Fund. The Hasbro Children’s Foundation of Hasbro Toys started the fund at NPT in the weeks after the tragedies with an initial gift of $250,000.

After the initial gift from Hasbro, NPT received over $4 million in additional donations. Contributions came in from celebrities, heads of state and other officials, as well as hundreds of ordinary Americans and other donors from around the world. Children donated to the fund: their allowance, school fundraising campaigns, and birthday money. Items like handwritten notes and drawings that accompanied the gifts accumulated in NPT’s offices and have since been donated to the September 11 Memorial and Museum in New York.

Hasbro organized a national committee of experts who understood the needs and issues facing traumatized children to advise and guide the fund’s grants. The fund awarded dozens of grants to non-profits and agencies helping children who lost a loved one, or experienced related trauma, including:

  • Tuesday’s Children, founded to provide support, counseling and healing for children who lost a loved one in the attacks, the organization has evolved to offer the same services to the children and families of veterans, and those impacted by mass violence and terrorism, both domestically and around the world. (EIN: 52-2347446)
  • StoryCorps, an audio and oral history project, used funding to record first-person accounts from people, especially children, and preserve their experience. The project was designed to be both therapeutic and to create an oral history of the day’s events. (EIN: 13-3753011)
  • National Center for School Crisis and Bereavement, now housed at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, was founded in 2005 with proceeds from the original Children’s Fund. Today it serves children and school communities dealing with trauma, grief and the aftermath of crises and mass violence. (EIN: 95-1690977)

In the twenty years since the attacks, our donors have devoted an incredible amount of additional philanthropic capital for other relief, education, commemoration and memorialization efforts. Below we’ve outlined a selection of the organizations they’ve chosen to support and who continue to operate, reminding us of the enduring impact of the attacks and honoring the memory of the victims.

  • National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center, a central place of remembrance in lower Manhattan, has educated millions of visitors on the impact of the attacks, while honoring the 2,753 people who lost their lives in the attacks in New York City and serving as an ongoing reminder of the day’s continued significance. (EIN: 61-1745872)
  • Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation was created in the memory of New York City firefighter who died while saving others at the World Trade Center. The foundation continues to serve veterans and first responders injured in the line of duty. (EIN: 02-0554654)
  • Pentagon Memorial Fund, honoring the 184 victims of the attacks on the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., the fund maintains a memorial site in Arlington and is in the process of developing a visitor’s education center. (EIN: 43-2018221)
  • The Friends of Flight 93 National Memorial, the Flight 93 National Memorial is a National Parks Service-designated site honoring the 40 victims of United Airlines Flight 93, which was diverted from its intended target and crashed in Stonycreek Township, PA. The organization provides support and care for the site, sponsors educational programming, and hosts events and memorials.
  • IAVA (Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America) is a major veterans’ organization serving and advocating for those who fought in America’s two post-9/11 wars. (EIN: 20-1664531)

The attacks are now two decades removed, but they have shaped our world in innumerable ways. As Americans and the world commemorate the day this year, organizations like the above and others continue to work today to honor the victims, heal the wounds and remember the heroism and generosity that accompanied the day’s tragedies.

NPT is not affiliated with any of the organizations described herein, and the inclusion of any organization in this material should not be considered an endorsement by NPT of such organization, or its services or products.

NPT does not provide legal or tax advice. This blog post is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be, and shall not be relied upon as, legal or tax advice. The applicability of information contained here may vary depending on individual circumstances.