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Ohio Valley Goodwill’s corporate headquarters in Woodlawn was the host location for a visit with Ohio Congressman Brad Wenstrup and Legislative Assistant, Annie Cummins, on Wednesday, August 10th. Welcomed by President and CEO, Joe Byrum and Veterans Services team members, Bill Darnell and John Briggs, the Congressman received a comprehensive overview of the organization’s programs and services with a specific focus on supports for our nation’s military service men and women. Celebrating its 100th anniversary of service this year, Goodwill typically serves between 800 and 900 veterans and veteran family members a year helping them to obtain employment and permanent housing in the Greater Cincinnati community. Goodwill also offers a transitional dormitory located at its Woodlawn headquarters to enable veterans to get back on their feet as they move towards permanent housing and employment in the community.
Part of the Continuum of Care, which is a local consortium of more than 22 partner organizations that work together to meet the needs of homeless individuals and families [which includes military veterans and their families]; Goodwill is well known for its outreach and support of local veterans. The Congressman was interested to learn more not only about the extensive services for veterans and their families offered by Goodwill but also, the organization’s programs for people with disabilities and partnerships with local county boards of Developmental Disabilities. Goodwill serves more than 3500 people annually and last year helped more than 919 to get jobs in the community. Goodwill is fully supportive of Employment First; which is legislation passed in Ohio, which indicates that employment services for individuals with developmental disabilities shall be directed towards community employment. Examples of the organization’s efforts towards Employment First and providing opportunities for individuals to become fully involved in their home communities were shared with the Congressman in helping him to learn more about the overall mission of Ohio Valley Goodwill.
Brad Wenstrup was elected in 2012 to represent the people of Ohio’s Second Congressional District in the United States House of Representatives. He brings experience as a doctor, Army Reserve officer, Iraq War veteran, and small business owner to help Congress tackle the economic and security challenges facing the nation.
In the 114th Congress, Brad serves on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, the Armed Services Committee, and the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, where he is the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity. As a member on each of these Committees, Brad is working to strengthen our military and national defense, help our returning service members transition to civilian life, and support southern Ohio’s veteran community. It is the Congressman’s commitment to the cause of Veterans services that prompted his interest in Ohio Valley Goodwill and learning more about its record of service to our military heroes. The Congressman’s visit ended with a brief discussion about Ohio Valley Goodwill’s economic impact in the Greater Cincinnati area as well as century long history of service to the community.
Ohio Valley Goodwill is grateful to the Congressman for making time to visit the organization’s corporate headquarters and to learn more about the services that the organization has been providing for the past 100 years in the Greater Cincinnati community.