By Fernando Torres|Staff Writer|
“The most important title that I carry is ‘veteran,’” said Brown about his own military service in the Navy.
The charity event was held in the VA Medical Center auditorium with approximately 700 people in attendance that included volunteers, staff, veterans, and medical officials.
The VA Loma Linda Healthcare System supports 65,000 veterans from the San Bernardino and Riverside counties. The partnership between Stater Bros. Charities and VA Loma Linda is in its third year of existence.
The purpose of this event was to thank Brown and the Stater Bros. Charities organization for their donation of $122,600 for the past year. Stater Bros. Charities has contributed a total of $215,125 for the past three years to the VA Loma Linda Healthcare System. The donation for this year was a significant increase from $42,525 that the hospital received in 2009.
The first speaker was Donald F. Moore, medical center director who thanked the staff, Brown, and Stater Bros. Charities for their contributions to the hospital.
Brown also recognized the federal government for helping out the veterans of America.
“I am glad that Washington finally woke up and said veterans need help,” said Brown.
During the event Brown presented Moore with a check of $100,000 to represent the monetary donation that Stater Bros gave to the hospital in 2010.
The money that the hospital receives will benefit veterans in various ways.
“This donation will help our veterans by acquiring two new vans to help transport our veterans, build an internet café for internet access and help the homeless veterans,” said VA Loma Linda hospital spokesperson Annie Tuttle. “The money from the donation will help the retired veterans and their families.”
Money also goes to funding a Vet to Vet Peer Counseling Program at the hospital.
The money from the donation not only helps veterans now but will go toward the future needs of the hospital.
Future plans for the hospital will include expanding and renovating the main lobby of the hospital, a new Health Care Center which will be a four-story, 300,000 sq. feet building to be completed in early 2015 as well as a new community living center.
In honor of National Volunteer Week Medical Center Director Donald F. Moore stressed the importance of volunteers.
“We are very indebted to our volunteers,” said Moore.
The hospital also accepts volunteers who wish to help the organization. There are multiple ways in which volunteers help, such as visits to veterans’ at bedsides, pushing wheelchairs for veterans, serving coffee to veterans and many other volunteer activities.
Anyone who wishes to volunteer at the VA Loma Linda Hospital can call (909) 583-6011.