Goodwill receives $225,000 Department of Labor grant to help homeless veterans

Federal funding will enable Goodwill to expand services available through Veterans Services Program

Published Thursday, February 25, 2016

Department of Labor GrantSARASOTA/BRADENTON, FL – Goodwill has received a grant of $225,000 from the Department of Labor to fund the Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program, which operates under the auspices of Goodwill’s Veterans Services Program. This grant will help to expand the available service offerings provided by Goodwill to assist our returning heroes.

In 2015, in response to the growing needs of area veterans, Goodwill’s Veterans Services Program expanded its focus to meet three distinct needs: the Veterans and their Families Program (VFP), the Special Emergency Resources for Veterans (SERV) Fund, and the Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program (HVRP). The Department of Labor grant directly funds HVRP – the focus of that program is solely homeless veterans.

“Since our veterans program launched in 2013, we have served more than 1,200 veterans. As we have observed and evaluated our efforts, we have recognized a growing need for assistance for the homeless veterans in our community,” said Bob Rosinsky, Goodwill Manasota president & CEO. “This grant has allowed us to focus time, energy and resources on this underserved population within our community. We are proud to work with a variety of community partners, individuals and organizations to make sure that we can meet the needs of all veterans in our service area.”

The grant is specifically designated for homeless veterans, but all veterans are welcome to contact the Veterans Service Program for assistance. Launched in 2013, Goodwill Manasota’s Veterans Services Program helps eliminate barriers to employment and provides opportunities for higher-paying positions for veterans and their families, as well as connects veterans with crucial social services and support to help them re-integrate into their families, communities and jobs.

“All too often, we find that many veterans returning from combat have suffered mental or physical trauma while serving overseas. Not only are these veterans left without jobs or access to services, many return with no secured housing,” said CJ Bannister, director of the Veterans Services Program. “We believe that our veterans deserve more – they deserve access to services they have earned, employment and housing. This grant will assist people with critical needs and serve as a meaningful way to thank veterans for their service.”

For more information, go to experiencegoodwill.org or call (941) 355-2721.

About Goodwill Manasota

Goodwill Manasota is an industry-leading, 501(c)(3), not-for-profit organization that changes lives through the power of work. With the sales of donated goods and philanthropic donations, Goodwill is able to assist people with disabilities and other barriers to employment by providing job skills training and employment opportunities. In 2015, Goodwill Manasota served 22,739 people, placed 961 people in jobs and assisted 358 veterans as they reintegrated back into the civilian workforce. Goodwill Manasota’s economic impact back to the community is worth $81.3 million. Goodwill is one of the pioneers of the reduce-reuse-recycle movement and this past year diverted 41 million pounds out of the landfill. We accomplish our mission through a network of Good Neighbor Centers in Sarasota, Manatee, Hardee and DeSoto counties and our Mission Development Services (MDS) around North America. Goodwill Manasota is accountable to a local Board of Directors. Goodwill Manasota in essence belongs to this community, and is not owned by any individual or company. For more information, visit www.experiencegoodwill.org.