Each year our company hosts a chili cookoff where the winner determines our Charity of the Year. In 2019, I had the pleasure of winning the chili cookoff and choosing an organization that is near and dear to my heart, the Omaha Veterans Food Pantry.

The Omaha Veterans Food Pantry is run by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and is dedicated to making a difference for veterans here in our own community. Beyond providing a food pantry twice a month, they also offer a safe place for veterans to shower (towels and soap included), a laundry area, a kitchenette with snacks and soup for those coming in off the street, placement services to help veterans find a place to live, and counseling for those needing guidance to get back on their feet.

The pantry also provides a “Stand Down” each year at the UNO Milo Bail Center for veterans to socialize with friends and receive goods and services. Each veteran is gifted a duffle bag and moves from station to station where they are given a coat, gloves, hats, boots, referrals for dental and medical services, and much more. We were honored and privileged to help volunteer this year.

So, why the Omaha Veterans Food Pantry? At PJ Morgan Real Estate we embrace six core values, one of them being “Enrich the community we love and live in.” I currently have a son-in-law who is deployed and several family members who have served our country. This personal connection encouraged me to seek out an organization that takes care of our veterans.

To see my co-workers embrace this charity and give as much as they did really means a lot. I’d also like to extend a BIG thank you to our vendors, clients, friends and family who participated in our Annual Charity Golf Tournament this past September. We raised $6,573.87!

With that money, we provided the pantry:

1100 lbs of food

157 critical needs items

30 coats

And thanks to my generous co-workers, we collected and delivered:

400 lbs of additional food

161 towels

818 hygiene items

With the giving season upon us, don’t forget to think about those in need. If you would like to donate to the Omaha Veterans Food Pantry, they are always in need of items. Contact Kerry Miller Loos at Kerry.MillerLoos@va.gov to find out how our Omaha veterans could use your help!

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