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Powering Pinellas: Veterans

Through the Victories for Veterans program, a unique partnership with the Tampa Bay Rays, the Duke Energy Foundation commits $1,000 for every Rays win to charities that support veterans. After reviewing the submissions from Tampa Bay area nonprofits during the program's pilot year in 2016, Duke Energy increased its pledge to $90,600. Ten local nonprofit organizations were selected. The program was expanded to Duke Energy's service territory statewide during the 2017 season and the foundation invested $79,100 in nine veterans organizations throughout Florida. Two Pinellas County organizations received $20,000.

We hope it will have a lasting effect on our community and is one of the many ways our company supports the men and women who have served our country. We are especially honored to assist our veterans through employee volunteer events, by actively hiring veterans - we employ nearly 2,000 veterans at Duke Energy - and through initiatives like this. The organizations that are benefiting from the 'Victories for Veterans' program offer invaluable services to local veterans and we are proud to invest in them.

Recipient organizations are recognized during a home game in the fall with an on-field check presentation by Duke Energy and Tampa Bay Rays representatives.

Duke Energy also had a $1.8 million spending impact on veteran-owned businesses in Pinellas County in 2016.

2017 Pinellas County Victories for Veterans Recipients:

  • Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge, Inc.: to enable injured and combat-wounded veterans to jointly participate with marine research scientists in the "Coral Restoration Challenge," which restores coral reefs.
  • Florida Dream Center: to aid veterans in Pinellas County who need assistance with housing code violations.

2016 Pinellas County Victories for Veterans Recipients:

Recipient organizations and their veteran-focused programs include:
  • CareerSource Pasco Hernando: to implement electronic record-keeping procedures, helping veterans maintain vital records
  • Homeless Emergency Project (HEP): to support HEP West Veterans Housing and veterans services to assist with rehabilitation and reintegration into civilian life
  • K9 Partners for Patriots: to support canine experiences and training for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injuries
  • Metropolitan Ministries: to help provide basic needs of veterans including meals and workforce development opportunities
  • ServiceSource Florida: to provide home-starter kits for veterans securing housing
  • St. Petersburg College (SPC) Foundation, Inc.: to support the Veterans Bridge Fund that assists SPC veteran students with mitigating enrollment delays and gaps caused by veteran’s affairs funding
  • Suncoast Hospice Foundation: to develop the Veterans History Project and support veteran-to-veteran pinning ceremonies
  • The Friends of the Largo Nature Parks: to support the Avian Veteran Alliance that provides PTSD support
  • Worknet Pinellas, Inc.: to host employability workshops and other workforce development opportunities for veterans
  • Wounded Warriors Abilities Ranch: to help get injured veterans out and active again with the use of transportation methods, such as wheelchairs

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