Riverhead veterans group among four to win Home Depot contest

02/22/2013 10:30 AM |
COURTESY PHOTO | Suffolk County United Veterans operates permanent supportive housing like this house for veterans in need.

COURTESY PHOTO | Suffolk County United Veterans operates permanent supportive housing like this house for veterans in need.

They didn’t win the top prize, but a Riverhead-based veterans group did win a $5,000 Home Depot gift card through a national competition last month.

Suffolk County United Veterans, whose offices are on Roanoke Avenue, was one of four nonprofit groups to compete in the Aprons in Action Campaign run by the The Home Depot Foundation.

The top prize in the contest — which involved garnering votes over Facebook — was a $25,000 gift card.

The group will spend the money on an “organizational improvement project” to serve now-homeless veterans, group officials said.

“We needed a new hot water heater and repairs to our outdoor siding to improve the housing for our Veterans,” said executive director Michael Stoltz. “We are thankful to everyone who voted for us and are delighted to receive a $5,000 gift card from The Home Depot.”

Suffolk County United Veterans was founded more than 20 years ago by two veterans to help their fellow vets who had fallen on hard times get back on their feet.

The group runs a facility in Yaphank to provide housing and support services for veterans, as well as permanent housing for veterans in East Patchogue, Bellport, Mastic, Yaphank and Middle Island.

Officials from the Home Depot Foundation said Suffolk County United Veterans is an organization worthy of the support.

“The Aprons in Action Program is a fun way for us to support the organizations that help our nation’s heroes, and Suffolk County United Veterans is truly a deserving organization,” said Kelly Caffarelli, Home Depot Foundation president.

“We are pleased to help them continue their service and generate awareness of their community efforts,” she said.

psquire@timesreview.com