Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

November 17, 2013

Food, clothing drive set for vets

Staff reports
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Food, clothing, personal items and even haircuts will be distributed to military veterans in need next weekend.

SERV Niagara’s outreach will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. Nov. 24 at Christ Community Church, 140 Genesee St.

According to SERV (Supporting, Empowering, Respecting Veterans), there are approximately 2,000 disabled and/or homeless veterans in Niagara County. The distribution effort is aimed at them and their families.

Staff from Sixteen West Salon are providing the free haircuts.

Through Friday, SERV is accepting donations of non-perishable food items, hygiene products, new and gently worn coats, gloves, hats, scarves, socks and boots.

Drop-off centers include: Christ Community Church; the SERV office, 80 Park Ave.; Middleport Village Hall; Royalton Town Hall; American Legion Cadille Post hall in Niagara Falls; Niagara County Community College’s student life office (G243), humanities and social science division office (E206) and the information desk (A130); and Lothlorien Therapeutic Riding Center in East Aurora.

Volunteers are needed to help set up the distribution center between 10 a.m. and noon Nov. 24. To enlist, call 553-6714 or 438-5437.

According to SERV founder Jennifer D’Andrea Terreri, the distribution effort has already been aided greatly by Anita Kempa Muzzi and her son, Adam, an eighth-grade student at Edward Town Middle School in Niagara.

Mrs. Muzzi, a military wife and daughter whose dad Joseph Kempa Jr. was a decorated Vietnam veteran, secured 1,500 food items, while Adam started a clothing drive at school.

Also, D’Andrea Terreri said, the Niagara Falls-based Trott Access Center donated clothing racks, shelving and a walker to SERV. 

SERV Niagara, a non-profit organization, is aiming to raise a day center and supportive residential facility for disabled and homeless veterans. The day center would provide a food pantry, showers and a laundry facility for veterans in addition to access to services, according to D’Andrea Terreri.

The SERV board is composed of: Vice Chairman Joseph G. Chudoba, an Air Force veteran and victim advocate with the Erie County Sheriff’s Office; Treasurer Mary E. Smith, retired chief accountant from the Niagara County Treasurer’s office and chaplain of the Middleport-based Clute-Phillips Post 938 American Legion Auxiliary; Secretary Phyllis Murawski, vice president of clinical services at UNYTS and treasurer of B. Leo Dolan Post 410 American Legion Auxiliary, Lockport; and board members Monica A. Farrar, Renee A. Knight and Arthur Lawson.

For more information, visit www.servniagara.org.