Through the Victories for Veterans program, a unique partnership with the Tampa Bay Rays, the Duke Energy Foundation committed $1,000 for every Rays win this season to charities that support veterans in the community. In reviewing the submissions from area nonprofits for the program's funds, Duke Energy has increased its pledge to $90,600 to be distributed to 10 local nonprofit organizations.
"Serving our communities is an integral part of Duke Energy's culture and we are especially honored to help support our veterans through employee volunteer events, by actively hiring veterans -- we employ nearly 2,000 veterans at Duke Energy -- and through initiatives like this," said Alex Glenn, state president, Duke Energy -- Florida. "The organizations that are benefiting from the 'Victories for Veterans' program offer invaluable services to local veterans and we are proud to invest in them."
The organizations will be recognized before the last home game of the season on Sunday, September 25, with an on-field check presentation by Duke Energy and Tampa Bay Rays representatives.
"Veterans, military personnel and their families are an important part of the Tampa Bay community," said Rays President Brian Auld. "The Rays, along with Duke Energy, are proud to recognize these organizations and their dedication to programs that support our veterans."
Recipient organizations and their veteran-focused programs include:
- CareerSource Pasco Hernando: to implement electronic record-keeping procedures, helping veterans maintain vital records
- Homeless Emergency Project (HEP): to support HEP West Veterans Housing and veterans services to assist with rehabilitation and reintegration into civilian life
- K9 Partners for Patriots: to support canine experiences and training for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injuries
- Metropolitan Ministries: to help provide basic needs of veterans including meals and workforce development opportunities
- ServiceSource Florida: to provide home-starter kits for veterans securing housing
- St. Petersburg College (SPC) Foundation, Inc.: to support the Veterans Bridge Fund that assists SPC veteran students with mitigating enrollment delays and gaps caused by veteran's affairs funding
- Suncoast Hospice Foundation: to develop the Veterans History Project and support veteran-to-veteran pinning ceremonies
- The Friends of the Largo Nature Parks: to support the Avian Veteran Alliance that provides PTSD support
- Worknet Pinellas, Inc.: to host employability workshops and other workforce development opportunities for veterans
- Wounded Warriors Abilities Ranch: to help get injured veterans out and active again with the use of transportation methods, such as wheelchairs