Charitiy & Activism

(Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation - now known as Veterans for America)

FA's Campaign for a Landmine Free World has, for more than a decade, worked to raise awareness about the suffering and devastation caused by landmines by advocating for a global ban on antipersonnel landmines. The worldwide anti-landmine movement co-founded by VFA president Bobby Muller in 1991 grew into the International Campaign to Ban Landmines and led to the Ottawa Treaty banning antipersonnel landmines and to the Nobel Peace Prize, both in 1997. In addition, VFA's international humanitarian programs assist innocent civilian victims of war and conflict in 14 war-torn countries by providing physical and social rehabilitation services as well as identifying landmine clearance and other public health priorities.

Long after conflicts end and treaties are signed, landmines continue to kill and maim innocent civilians. In fact, each year more than 18,000 men, women, and children lose arms, legs, even their lives to landmines. Hundreds of mines may lie hidden between villagers' homes and their sources of food and water, forcing them to risk their lives each day or face certain death by hunger or thirst. And, ironically, landmines are no longer even an effective weapon of war.

hundreds of thousands of prosthetic limbs in countries around the world, and we continue to provide rehabilitation to the victims, as well as periodic repairs to the limbs. Adapting to the needs, conditions and resources of each country where we are at work, our programs also provide patients with job training and employment, helping them regain independence and self-respect as well as mobility. Our own experiences have taught us that rehabilitating war victims means more than rebuilding their bodies; it also means helping them rebuild their lives.

Concerts for a Landmine Free World bring together on stage some of the most distinguished voices and finest singers-songwriters of our time to share songs and stories and help raise public awareness about the global landmine tragedy. Many of the artists who give of their time and resources to help VFA have traveled overseas to tour our rehabilitation clinics, meet with international staff and clinic patients and experience first-hand how silk scarves are hand-woven on wooden looms at the Preah Vihear clinic in northern Cambodia. The family of musicians who today champion the landmine cause was formed in 1998 by Grammy Award winner Emmylou Harris, following her trip with VFA President Bobby Muller to Cambodia and Vietnam.


Activities: donations, charity events, South East Asia trip, spokesperson

Veterans for America founder, Bobby Muller, explain how Sheryl Crow can make the difference.

muller.gif - Picamatic - upload your images 

Sheryl Crow first became aware of the landmine problem during a spring 1997 trip to Bosnia with First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and then decided to get involved herself. She performed, along with Emmylou, Steve Earle, Mary Chapin Carpenter, and Buddy and Julie Miller, at a VFA dinner honoring Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy in May 1998. In October of that year, Crow performed at the benefit concert for the Campaign held in Washington, DC. In January 2000, she traveled with VFA president Bobby Muller to Vietnam and Cambodia to view the problem first hand and visit VFA's rehabilitation programs in those two countries. In May 2000, Crow performed an acoustic concert during CNN's 20th anniversary celebrations as the guest and spokesperson of the campaign.

Oct 9, 1998

Campaign for a landmine free world

If tonight's show supporting the Campaign for a Landmine Free World taught us anything, it's that the legitimacy of a cause is in no way proportional to the quality of the benefit concert that will inevitably be thrown together to help out.

Sheryl Crow, Emmylou Harris, Lucinda Williams, Steve Earle, and Willie Nelson joined forces at D.C.'s Constitution Hall to back Bobby Muller -- the founder of both the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation and the Nobel Prize-winning International Campaign to Ban Landmines -- in his fight to rid the earth of millions of the underground killers. But with the exception of last-minute lineup addition Crow, the four-hour evening was relatively diluted of thrills (not to mention the expected proselytizing) due to poor time management and a less than eager crowd.

"I'm not on tour right now, so I'm trying to get my sea legs back," said show-opener Crow, who recently trimmed her famous flowing locks for a conservative bobbed 'do. "I haven't played for a while. I'm glad you could be here for my, uh, experiment."

That experiment, a quick, five-song set performed (mostly) acoustically, featured tender readings of two politically charged older songs, "A Change" and "Redemption Day." Crow, however, wouldn't let loose her smolderingvocal acrobatics until trying out the new stuff, The Globe Sessions' "My Favorite Mistake," "Riverwide," and "Mississippi."

The latter tune, penned by Bob Dylan and hand-delivered to Crow by the man himself ("Bob writes all right," she joked. "I thought, I guess I'll help him out"), is the perfect showcase for the singer-songwriter's wailingstyle: emotionally grounded one instant, romantically in the clouds the next. At approximately 8:25 p.m., as Crow hopped off her stool and waved her way backstage, the seemingly unaware audience had witnessed the evening's highlight.

The remaining three-and-a-half hours (of which almost half of that was spent waiting patiently for the next act) were as anti-climactic as they were long. In between 30-minute gaps of wandering the lobby and searching for booze, the crowd was treated to: Harris and her new band Spyboy covering an aching "Love Hurts"; Williams, whom Harris introduced as having "a voice that can sing the chrome off a trailer hitch," offering up a scorched-earth rendition of Dylan's "Masters of War"; and Earle, barely on stage long enough to set a mood, inviting Harris to join him for an uncharacteristically mumbled (yet touching nonetheless) "Taneytown."

By the time Nelson hit the stage at a quarter past 11, much of the three-quarters capacity crowd had ambled for the exits. As if warned beforehand that the night was running long, Nelson Cuisin-arted a batch of hits, covers, and new songs, including "Whiskey River," "Crazy," "NightLife," "Help Me Make It Through the Night," and, from the recently released Teatro, "I Never Cared for You." He connected each song with his acquired-taste guitar noodling, which would switch from jazzy to bluesy to country in the snap of a snare. It was inspired, yes, but not the safe, greatest-hits package the older crowd obviously wanted.

Round midnight, the Red-Headed Stranger invited Harris, Williams, and Earle (whither Crow?) out for a rushed "Will the Circle Be Unbroken," a wannabe showstopper that, in tune with the evening, was infused with lotsa heartbut lacked the necessary precision to get the crowd on its feet.


Monday, 17 January, 2000, 14:25 GMT
Singer Crow backs landmine campaign

Rock star Sheryl Crow is the latest big name to visit Cambodia to support the campaign against landmines. The singer, whose hits include All I Wanna Do, flew in with fellow American Nanci Griffith to spend four days in Cambodia - one of the world's most heavily-mined countries. "My hope is to bring attention to the fact that worldwide 22 people a minute are being killed or maimed by landmines," the star told reporters.

Source: BBC News

Sheryl Crow and Nanci Griffith right now tour of Cambodia and Vietnam with the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation. They are there to see firsthand the injuries and mishaps caused by landmines. The VVAF's Campaign for a Landmine Free World focuses on this international problem. Crow and Griffith are lending their names to the effort as Princess Diana did before she died. Griffith is also part of the Concert for a Landmine Free World tour. The tour features Emmylou Harris, Mary Chapin Carpenter and Steve Earle.


Griffith, Crow To Play Landmine Tour

Nanci Griffith and Sheryl Crow are the latest musicians to support the Campaign for a Landmine Free World. The singer/songwriters are slated to arrive Jan. 11 in Hanoi, Vietnam for an 11-day tour of that country and Cambodia. They will stop at rehabilitation clinics operated by the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation (VVAF), founder of the Campaign for a Landmine Free World, which counts Emmylou Harris as a chief supporter.

-- Jim Bessman, N.Y,