Second Annual 335 Miles for Veterans

Posted by on Oct 7, 2016 in Events | 0 comments

335 Miles for Veterans is an annual fundraiser started by Veterans Leadership Program of Western Pennsylvania’s (VLP) case manager, Jack Kudrav, United States Army Veteran and avid cyclist, who rode his bicycle 335 miles from Pittsburgh, PA, to Washington, D.C. for one reason – to remember and honor military veterans. Read about his full journey here! In 2016, Jack was accompanied by 19 other riders who heard Jack’s story and were inspired to help him in his fundraising efforts. The team left from VLP’s offices on June 30th and arrived in our nation’s capital on July 4th after bicycling 335 miles along the Great Allegheny Passage and the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal trails. In just four months, the team raised more than $26,000! Click here to see photos from their ride, including the starting line and finish line celebrations! —- JOIN THE 2017 CYCLING TEAM —- 335 Miles for Veterans is about embracing our veterans, embracing our freedom on Independence Day and recognizing all the men and women who have fought to preserve our freedom. Do you want to join a team of military veterans and supporters of the veteran community for this year’s Fourth of July ride to D.C.? Registration is now open! Choose between two different heats: Registration Rapid: The Rapid group will bicycle to D.C. in four days, leaving from Pittsburgh on July 1st and arriving in D.C. on July 4th with the rest of the group. Participants must be able to bike 100 miles per day. Tour: The Tour group will bicycle to D.C. in five days, leaving from Pittsburgh on June 30th and arriving in D.C. on July 4th with the rest of the group. Participants must be able to bike 75 miles per day. Fundraising  When you register on CrowdRise.com, you’ll create an account to start your fundraising efforts. Each rider participating in 335 Miles for Veterans is asked to raise a minimum of $1 per mile, or $335 by June 30, 2017. Proceeds benefit the men and women veterans who come to VLP during their critical time of need. Each year, VLP serves more than 2,500 local veterans who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, unemployed or underemployed, or facing an emergency. By connecting them to housing, jobs and essential services, VLP is helping veterans find a better life for themselves and their families. For questions, please contact info@vlpwpa.org or (412)...

Read More

18th Annual Veterans Day Breakfast

Posted by on Oct 6, 2016 in Events | 0 comments

VLP invites the Pittsburgh community to join us at our 18th Annual Veterans Day Breakfast on Friday, November 11th, 2016 at Duquesne University (Student Union Ballroom) from 8:00 AM – 10:00 AM. Considered to be the largest Veterans Day breakfast in Pennsylvania, this occasion brings together nearly 700 guests – including Veterans who served in WWII to the recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. We enjoy a meal together, honor those who have served, and hear their inspiring stories. Schedule of Events: 7:30 AM: Check-in 8:00 AM: Program begins 9:30 AM: Formal Program ends 10:00 AM: Veteran Story Telling with the Veterans Breakfast Club MEET OUR GUEST SPEAKER MEET OUR SPECIAL GUESTS On November 11th, you’ll hear the incredible stories of these Veterans and witness the miraculous impact that these service dogs have made on their lives. TICKETS ARE NOW ON SALE! Join us at our 18th Annual Veterans Day Breakfast to honor our United States Military Veterans for their service and sacrifice and to give thanks to these brave men and women who have defended our country, our freedom, and our way of life. Tickets are $35 per person or $350 to sponsor a table of 10. Buy your ticket today! MAIL: Fill out this RSVP form and mail it to Veterans Leadership Program, 2934 Smallman Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201 PHONE: Call VLP’s offices at (412) 481-8200 Proceeds from this event will benefit VLP, Shepherd’s Heart Fellowship, Friends of Danang, and the Duquesne University Endowed Veteran Student Resource Fund. ARE YOU INTERESTED IN BECOMING A SPONSOR? Community support is essential to our ongoing efforts in serving the local Veteran community. By becoming a Veterans Day Breakfast sponsor, you’ll not only make a direct impact on a Veteran’s life, but it is also an excellent way to reach a consumer-based audience of 700 guests with a high level of buying power. You’ll receive brand awareness and good public relations ultimately driving a higher level of traffic to your business. To receive all benefits of your sponsorship level, please return this form by October 28, 2016. For questions, please contact Toshua Jarrett at (412) 481-8200 or...

Read More

2016 Veterans Day Parade

Posted by on Oct 4, 2016 in Events | 0 comments

Every year, VLP has the honor of walking in the Veterans Day Parade, considered one of the largest in the nation! On Friday, November 11th, be sure to look for VLP in the 96th Annual Veterans Day Parade. We’re excited to decorate Molly’s Trolleys and pass out candy to the City of Pittsburgh! The parade route will start downtown on Liberty Avenue at 11th Street at 10:30 a.m. Interested in joining VLP’s float? Contact Toshua Jarrett at (412) 481-8200 or jarrettt@vlpwpa.org for more information! Hope to see you on Veterans Day!...

Read More

PAST EVENT: Stand Down Pittsburgh 2016

Posted by on Jul 11, 2016 in Events | 0 comments

Stand Down Pittsburgh is a day of care and free services for homeless Veterans or Veterans who are at risk of becoming homeless. Each year, we provide breakfast, lunch, 60 health & community service providers, entertainment, barbers, clothing, & supplies. The 2016 Stand Down was held at Stage AE on September 24th from 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Free services included: Breakfast Lunch Hot Showers Haircuts Personal care items Clothing Counseling Legal Assistance ID Cards Housing resources Employment resources Social Security VA healthcare General health care Veterans benefits Other resources include substance abuse, domestic violence, military sexual trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder, education & training programs, and more! Entertainment: River City Brass played a community concert at Stand Down Pittsburgh. The mission of Pittsburgh’s own River City Brass (RCB) 28 member band founded in 1981 is to entertain, educate, and engage citizens locally, nationally, and internationally in the American musical culture. In honor of Stand Down Pittsburgh, River City Brass will play a selection of patriotic music.   Be sure to check back for details on the 2017 event or follow us on Facebook! Like Stand Down Pittsburgh on Facebook!    Stand Down Pittsburgh is made possible thanks to a community collaboration between the following organizations:  SPONSORED...

Read More

PAST EVENT: The Crucible Hike

Posted by on Feb 26, 2016 in Events | 0 comments

What is The Crucible? Imagine a group of 60 people tackling the Pennsylvania Laurel Highlands Trail for a 3-day, 70+ mile extreme hike with a full gear pack – and The Crucible begins. This 3-day extreme journey through some of Pennsylvania’s most spectacular scenery is not for the faint of heart, but your life won’t be the same after you’ve participated in The Crucible. It’s a journey of passion, determination and personal triumph, as much as it’s an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of local veterans who are in need of housing and employment services. Where will we be hiking? The 70-mile hiking trail stretches along the picturesque Laurel Mountains from the Conemaugh Gorge near Johnstown, PA where you can hike along a rocky footpath and dirt road through mountain laurel to the edge of a 1,000-foot gorge at 2,400 feet to the Youghiogheny River at Ohiopyle – located at the southern reaches of the Laurel Ridge, encompassing rugged natural beauty providing some of the best whitewater in the eastern United States as well as spectacular scenery. What else is included? The Crucible hikers will have access to overnight shelter areas with food, medical attention and plenty of campfires and stories – where new friendships will be forged. The physical and mental challenges associated with the 3-day event mirror the timeless military credo – “we’re all in this together.” The Crucible Hike 2016 recap On September 11th weekend, 98 hikers joined us for The Crucible Hike. In honor and memory of the September 11th attacks, each of the last 11 miles on the trail were dedicated to a local service member who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in the War on Terror. The Crucible Hike also donated $1,000 to The Global War on Terror Memorial Foundation in memory of Private First Class Nils George Thompson, a United States Army service member from Connellsville, PA. Thompson was deployed to Mosul, Iraq in 2005 and, while on routine patrol in the turret of his Stryker vehicle, was killed by sniper fire on August 4th, one day after his 19th birthday. The Global War on Terror Memorial Foundation honored the family of Private First Class Nils Thompson by presenting a plaque, recognizing the family as the first major donor of the foundation. VLP was overwhelmed by the community’s support for this event, which raised more than $76,000 for three local Veteran charities including VLP, Veteran on Fire, and The Global War on Terror Memorial Foundation. Be sure to check back for details on the 2017 event or like our Facebook page! Like The Crucible Hike on Facebook!    Have questions about this event? Please call (412) 481-8200 or contact Dan Blevins...

Read More

PAST EVENT: A Tribute to Veterans 2016

Posted by on Jan 13, 2016 in Events | 0 comments

Our 2016 A Tribute to Veterans brought together honorable veterans, well-known business leaders and dedicated supporters of the veteran community on the Thursday before Memorial Day – May 26, 2016. Nearly 500 people joined us at the Carnegie Museum Music Hall in Oakland for an evening of honoring, celebrating and saluting the men and women who have served our country. CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR TRIBUTE HONOREES: Veteran of the Year Award – Staff Sergeant Joe Wadlow Chairman’s Award – Sergeant Joseph Caskey    Community Partner Award – Life Changing Service Dogs for Veterans Corporate Leader Award – The Pittsburgh Pirates In case you weren’t able to attend, you can view all of the photos from this year’s event here! Many thanks to our photographer, Mary Beth Kratsas.   We must applaud our Tribute Chair and Tribute Emcee for a job well done as our hosts: The Honorable Jessica L. Garfola Wright & Mr. Ken Carlson.   Also, many of our attendees were captivated by Chris Jamison’s impressive performance. Chris even debuted a new song titled, “Better Man.” We concluded the evening with the special Tribute tradition of remembering all of the men and women from the Pittsburgh region who gave their all to serve and protect our country. Chris Jamison sang a beautiful rendition of Amazing Grace, which you can watch at the video below.  ...

Read More