NVF with Greater Los Angeles VA and Lands’ End Gives Away Free Clothes to Veterans

 It was a rainy morning last Friday, Feburary 3, 2017. Veterans began lining up at 8:00 AM at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System (VAGLAHS) in West Los Angeles. They were first in line to receive the free clothes donated to the National Veterans Foundation by Lands’ End.  VA staff and volunteers set up tents to shield Veterans and volunteers from the rain.  
NVF Lands' End Clothing Giveaway at Greater Los Angeles VA

Photo: Scott Hathaway, VAGLAHS Medical Media

 
Altogether the NVF distributed 24,000 pieces of new Lands’ End clothing at the event.   Volunteers and staff from the NVF and VA handed out jackets, sweaters, shirts, pants and dresses.
 

The project started sometime before Veterans Day, 2016. Land’s End contacted NVF about a truckload of new clothing they wanted to donate to be given to Veterans in-need.  Lands’ End ended up donating another truckload about a week later. They also contributed $10,000 in funds to the NVF.

 

 
The NVF looked for an opportunity to give most of the clothes to Veterans in a single event. NVF Resource Director Mike Washington reached out to James “Juma” Egler at at VAGLAHS’s Community Engagement and Reintegration Services. They talked about the possibility of doing a joint event on the ​VA’s West LA Campus.  Juma got Nikki Baker, Associate Chief, Public and Congressional Relations on board and the event came together quickly over a the next few weeks.
 
NVF's Gerald Hillard unloads free clothes at VA event to hand out clothing to Veterans donated by Lands' End

NVF’s Gerald Hillard gets ready to unload free clothes for Veterans

The NVF Team that worked on planning the event were Michael Washington, Director of Resources; Gerald Hillard, Information Services Representative; and Bill Morgan, Director of Development. Mike and Gerald did an incredible job unloading the initial shipments from Lands’ End, then loading a large part of it back onto a truck for the VA event. Gerald and a team of volunteers from the VA unloaded the pallets and boxes of clothing for the event. NVF’s Women Outreach Coordinators Mary Ann Mayer and Leaphy Khim and our Founder & President Shad Meshad also helped sort and handout the clothing.

The National Veterans Foundation’s work, at its core, helps Veterans successfully transition from military to civilian life. Sometimes this transition can last a lifetime.  Many vets struggle with their transition.  This event and the clothing it distributed provided real, material support to veterans in-need New, high quality clothing like ​the clothes we gave out on Friday provided hundreds of Veterans with a potential new job interview outfit, or warm clothing during this wet California winter. Clothing they may not have been able to afford in their current circumstances.

A Team Effort to Give Free Clothes to Veterans

NVF and Greater Los Angeles VA partner to give free clothes to Veterans donated by Lands' End

James “Juma” Egler (VA), Micheal Washington (NVF), Shad Meshad (NVF) & Nikki Baker (VA). Photo: Scott Hathaway, VAGLAHS Medical Media

The VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System team was incredibly supportive of the event and essential to its success.  Even if the VA had just donated the space, it would have been a challenge for the NVF to pull off an event of this size with our own staff and volunteers. Nikki, Juma, Mike and volunteer services at supported the event every step of the way.  Their knowledge from similar past events was instrumental in organizing the flow of the event.  They provided space, tents, tables, volunteers, security and so much more.

​”The Lands’ End clothing giveaway with the Greater Los Angeles VA was amazing,” said NVF President and Founder Shad Meshad. “For the National Veterans Foundation to be able to partner with the VA and Lands’ End to give away more than 24,000 brand new jackets, sweaters, shirts, pants and dresses to Veterans in-need at the VA Greater Los Angeles campus was a huge opportunity to help Veterans. The VA team really came out in full force with the location, volunteers, publicity and logistical support to make the event a huge success. Our team couldn’t have done it without them.”

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