Grady-White Clubs not only have great fun together, they can also work together to do important things in their home communities! The Tampa Bay Grady-White Club (TBGWC) is a shining example! In 2016, TBGWC delivered over 200 boxes/$35,000 of new clothing from the Bealls stores corporate headquarters in Bradenton, FL, in support of their area Veterans Affairs STAND DOWN initiative. STAND DOWN is a national Veteran’s Administration (VA) program that assists vets in renewing overall veteran well-being. New clothing from TBGWC helps the veterans engender pride and confidence in themselves in job interviews and other rejuvenating activities. And above and beyond the service to STAND DOWN, the Tampa Bay club has also contributed to the Bill Young VA Center in Seminole, FL as a community service.
The Tampa Bay Grady-White Club’s Community Service Project began gradually several years ago and has continued to grow and prosper. The Tampa Bay area is home to an abundance of military service veterans, some of whom suffer with visible and/or invisible wounds as a result of their service to our nation. Club members initially met with a Volunteer Service Coordinator at a veteran’s facility in the area to determine what the veterans’ specific needs were and how the Club might help. The project began by asking TBGWC members to bring in large-sized toiletry items that we combined in “ditty bags” for veterans as an annual project. The next year, the Club asked for “shower shoes,” i.e. flip-flops.
Eventually the project focused on opportunities to provide new clothing and that’s where the Club found a truly rewarding niche to help area veterans better themselves, get back on their feet and find employment and fulfillment. Taking advantage of both the Club’s cash donations and an excellent relationship with Bealls Corporate in Bradenton, FL this endeavor has grown into a proud and important community service project. Many TBGWC members to participate in a variety of these service activities including shopping for the clothing or doing the pick-ups from Bradenton and deliveries to the vets.
Grady-White salutes our veterans as well as the Tampa Bay Grady-White Club and its members for a wonderful, valuable and admirable service project!