RICHMOND, Va., Nov. 10, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Dominion announced today it is donating $50,000 to two New England organizations that assist military veterans and their families. The grants are part of a larger program in which Dominion will provide $250,000 to 10 organizations in six states.
"Dominion is grateful for the service and sacrifice military veterans and their families have made in defending our country," said Thomas F. Farrell II, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Dominion. "Some are facing hardships and going through difficult times. In recognition of Veterans Day, we are supporting programs that directly help homeless veterans and programs that benefit the wounded and their families."
The organizations each receiving $25,000 are ABRI/Homes for the Brave in Bridgeport, Conn. and the Massachusetts Military Heroes Fund in Boston.
"As Massachusetts continues to lead the nation in providing services for veterans and military families, we value strong partnerships with organizations in the private sector, like Dominion," said Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray, who also chairs the Governor's Advisory Council for Veterans' Services.
The ABRI/Homes for the Brave will use the grant for Female Soldiers: Forgotten Heroes. (FS:FH) will be the first community-based transitional home in Connecticut dedicated to homeless female veterans and their children less than two years of age. FS: FH will provide 15 beds of transitional housing and provide vocational training and job placement service and mental health and addiction services. The organization also would offer life skills coaching to help female veterans achieve a healthy transition back into their communities.
ABRI/Homes for the Brave CEO Joy Kiss, said, "Dominion's generous support will help us greatly as we open our new residential facility. As we approach Veteran's Day, it's very meaningful to all of us at Homes for the Brave that our female veterans and their families are being recognized."
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that 107,000 veterans are homeless on any given night. The agency also cites that over the course of a year, about twice that many experience homelessness. And according to the National Coalition of Homeless Veterans, the extreme shortage of affordable housing, livable income and access to health care are compounded by a lack of family and social support networks.
The Massachusetts Military Heroes Fund provides support, advocacy programs and referral services to bereaved families of Massachusetts military service personnel fallen in service to the United States while supporting Operations Noble Eagle, Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.
"As a small non-profit, we rely heavily on our local business and community partners to fulfill our mission of providing financial assistance, programs and services to the families of our Massachusetts fallen service members" said Diane Nealon, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Military Heroes Fund.
"By providing this generous grant, the Dominion Foundation has become a strong partner in our work to remember and honor our brave heroes by providing much needed support to the families they left behind."
Murray said: "Through Dominion's partnership with the Massachusetts Military Heroes Fund, together we are able to reach more veterans and ensure these brave men and women have access to the range of benefits and services they have rightfully earned."
"It is critical that we reach out to veterans in need," Farrell said. "America's veterans have served in many war zones, and now they need our help. The grants are funding community-based organizations because they know best how and where the money should be used."
Dominion is making the grant through the Dominion Foundation, the company's philanthropic arm. Dominion Foundation grants are funded by shareholder dollars, and the cost of the grants is not borne by customers.
The Foundation also provided grants to military support organizations in Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio.
Dominion has a long-standing record of military support. In March, Dominion joined four other energy companies in the "Troops to Energy Jobs" pilot program designed to link thousands of future job openings in the energy industry with troops leaving military service. The company currently employs more than 1,200 veterans across 14 states.
Employees currently participate in an award-winning troop support program that has delivered thousands of care packages to deployed soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. Dominion is the recipient of multiple military awards and recognitions having recently been named one of the "Top 20 Military Spouse-Friendly Employers" by Military Spouse magazine.
In 2010, Dominion, its charitable foundation and employees invested more than $24 million and 150,000 volunteer hours in programs that help improve the quality of life for people in the states where Dominion operates power stations, natural gas and other energy facilities.
Dominion is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy, with a portfolio of approximately 28,200 megawatts of generation. Dominion operates the nation's largest natural gas storage system and serves retail energy customers in 15 states. For more information about Dominion, visit the company's website at www.dom.com.
SOURCE Dominion Resources Inc.