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Goodwill Manasota celebrates veterans with Veterans Resource Fair

Free event on November 4 will feature information from Goodwill and community partners about programs for and resources available to area veterans and their families

SARASOTA, Fla. – While Veterans Day is a wonderful opportunity for Americans to pause to recognize the sacrifices and courage of those who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces, Goodwill Manasota believes it is vitally important to remember our heroes each and every day. Goodwill endeavors to do so through its American Veterans and Their Families Program, which provides numerous programs and services to assist veterans with their re-entry into civilian life. On Friday, November 4, during the Goodwill Manasota Veterans Resource Fair – which is presented in recognition of Veterans Day (November 11) – veterans and their families, and the general public, can learn more about resources available in the community to support area veterans all year 'round. The event takes place at the Veterans Services office (8940 Lockwood Ridge Rd., Sarasota) from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. A particular focus of the Veterans Resource Fair will be digital navigator services, provided by The Patterson Foundation’s Digital Access for All initiative. The Foundation will have a team of “digital navigators” on-site to help people who may be eligible apply for free or discounted internet and broadband services via the Affordable Connectivity Program. Guests can also receive assistance with new device setup and use, device and internet security, virtual meeting programs such as Facetime and Zoom, and social media platforms such as Facebook through a partnership with Sarasota County. The Sarasota Technology Users Group (STUG), which offers free or low-cost devices (laptops, tablets and/or cell phones), will be on hand to assist participants. The Patterson Foundation recruited these entities to help support the event. Other community partners will be in attendance to share information about their offerings benefiting veterans and their families:

  • Acupuncture Anywhere: Acupuncture services

  • The Everglades University: College-level education and GI Bill information

  • Goodwill Manasota: Case management, career services, networking opportunities, information and referral services, and emergency assistance

  • Manatee Technical College: Technical education and GI Bill information

  • SRQ Vets: Connections to community resources and VA claim information

"Goodwill Manasota is proud to provide service members with a broad range of programs and services to streamline their re-entry into civilian life. Our Veterans Services team is staffed by veterans, who understand the challenges of the military to civilian transition," said Goodwill Manasota president and CEO Donn Githens. "In order to provide the wide continuum of care required by veterans, it takes a village. We are grateful to our community partners who are participating in the event as well as the generous donors and caring volunteers who support us throughout the year in serving our heroes." To learn more about Goodwill Manasota's American Veterans and Their Families Program, contact Todd Hughes, Veterans Services program manager, at 941-355-2721, ext. 454 or todd.hughes@gimi.org, or visit experiencegoodwill.org/veteransservices. PHOTO ID: (From l-r) Goodwill Manasota team members Randy Wright, Richard Burger, mascot Goodwilly, vice president Margie Genter, and Veterans Services program manager Todd Hughes Courtesy photo/Goodwill Manasota 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 philanthropic donations and revenue generated by the sales of donated goods, Goodwill is able to assist people with disabilities, veterans, seniors, and those with other barriers to employment by providing jobs, job skills training, and free career services. For more information or for a listing of locations, visit experiencegoodwill.org or call 941-355-2721.

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