Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Hackensack Elks and Rotary team up to feed veteran families

"So long as there are veterans, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks will never forget them."  This is the Elks National Veterans Service pledge, and it is something that has always stuck with Leonard Agrusti, an Elk and current Governor of Rotary District 7490 (Bergen, Hudson, and Passaic Counties).

Elks give generously of their time, energy, and resources to assist in veteran causes.  In each of the 172 VA Medical Centers nationwide, there is an Elks Committee at work.  Elks also run the Army of Hope which offers assistance to families of active duty servicemen, the adopt-a-veteran program, the veterans leather program, among others.  Click here to learn more about the Elks commitment to our veterans.

The Rotary Clubs of District 7490 have joined together to open the Rotary Military Family Assistance Center (Rotary MFAC), a regional food pantry to support the families of active duty reservists and military members, veterans with a medical discharge and the families of military personnel that lost their lives during active service.

In Governor Lenny's year serving, one of his major initiatives has been the opening of a veteran family food pantry in each county within the District.  With office space just secured in Paterson, and shelving units assembled, the Passaic County food pantry is nearly ready to be opened.  Hearing this news, the Hackensack Elks and Rotary teamed up to ensure that the shelves were stocked for families in need.  Both clubs donated the funds necessary to deliver a trailer full of food and stock the food pantry shelves.  Thanks to their efforts, food baskets will be delivered to many area veteran families in time for the holidays.

Anyone interested in donating to the veteran family food pantry can contact your local Rotary Club or  Steve Jarahian at svjarahian@aol.com for more information.

These recently assembled shelves are now filled for Veteran families

The Elks is a national service organization with a 140+ year history and nearly one million members in 2,000 lodges around the country. Local lodges invests in their communities through programs that help children grow up healthy and drug-free, by undertaking projects that address unmet needs, and by honoring the service and sacrifice of our veterans. The Order of Elks spends more than $80,000,000 per year in charitable programs. If you are interested in becoming an Elk you can contact the Hackensack Lodge at 201-487-0658.

Rotary is a worldwide organization of more than 1.2 million business, professional, and community leaders. Members of Rotary clubs, known as Rotarians, provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards in all vocations, and help build goodwill and peace in the world. There are 33,000 Rotary clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas. Clubs are nonpolitical, nonreligious, and open to all cultures, races, and creeds. The Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation supported solely by voluntary contributions from Rotarians and friends of the Foundation who share its vision of a better world.  Anyone interested in joining is encouraged to contact Club President Sharon Bregman: sharonbregman@hotmail.com.

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