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Give Back NH: Homeland Heroes Foundation

Executive Director Julie Weymouth addresses the crowd at the Veterans Appreciation Luncheon at Patriot Nissan on November 6th, 2021.
Karen Trop
Executive Director Julie Weymouth addresses the crowd at the Veterans Appreciation Luncheon at Patriot Nissan on November 6th, 2021.

Give Back New Hampshire is a bi-weekly segment that spotlights New Hampshire nonprofit organizations. It airs every other Saturday at 9:35 during Weekend Edition.

Homeland Heroes Foundation is a multi-service non-profit organization based in Salem, New Hampshire that serves veterans across the Northeast.

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The following audio postcard takes us to a Veteran's Appreciation Luncheon organized by Homeland Heroes and hosted by Patriot Nissan in Salem.

Julie Weymouth: Hi, my name is Julie Weymouth, I'm the executive director and co-founder of the Homeland Heroes Foundation. We are located in Salem, New Hampshire, and we serve veterans in this region, Mass., Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont. We do quite a lot. Really, every military organization in this area calls upon us for help, and we work with them to really come up with a comprehensive program for veterans in need. With that said, we donate furniture and household items to help create a comfortable home. We bridge the gaps between ourselves and other agencies to ensure no veteran goes homeless or lives in unsafe conditions. We work with community partnerships to offer supportive services to rebuild connection with family and self, and we find the resources needed to help veterans lead a life with dignity and hope. There's nothing a veteran loves more than being with a brother or sister veteran, so we provide that as well.

Jeannette Gurska: My name is Jeannette Gurska. I'm a volunteer with Homeland Heroes for a little over three years now. Today we're having a luncheon for veterans, being November's, a huge, you know, Veteran's Month, and you can't get everything done on one day. Donations, you know, business partners in town that donate food for the event and the ROTC from Salem High School comes and does the presentation of colors. And it's just nice to sit in a relaxed atmosphere and meet a lot of the veterans that did it all for us.

Alice Zujewski: My name is Alice Zujewski. My husband lost his hearing when he was in the Air Force in the Philippines. Two weeks ago, we celebrated our 60th wedding anniversary and two days ago I celebrated my birthday. So all these [events]: this is part of our celebration came last year. We were so impressed. I even videotaped it on my phone and brought it home so my children could see it. The veteran's services are so good to the veterans. I just can't explain and feel in my heart how important this is. And anybody that needs help if you knock at their door, I'm sure they will help.

Chaplain John Black, USN (Retired): We're so grateful for Homeland Heroes and all of those who are here that support our veterans and the families of veterans, and we ask that you would continue to bless them, to be a blessing. And of course, we thank you for this food and for providing for us in many ways. God, we're just so grateful.

Julie: The biggest thing that people can do is just come to our fundraisers. Go to our website, hey, you can go to our Facebook page. We have three big fundraisers every year. Next one that's coming up is March 26. That's at Castleton Event Center in Windham, New Hampshire. Tickets are available on our website. It's a Mardi Gras-themed event this year. We have a New Orleans band and we're going to have a lot of fun. Every little bit helps, and ninety-one percent of everything that we raise goes back to the veteran community. So people's money really is working for them and helping our most treasured veterans that have done so much for us.


HOW TO GET INVOLVED: Buy tickets to attend the upcoming Mardi Gras benefit gala on Sat. March 26, 2022 here. Hear more about veteran perspectives by listening to the Homeland Heroes Salute podcast online.

Karen joined NHPR as its Operations Manager in 2021. Karen most recently worked as Program Director of KNOM Radio Mission, a community radio station based in Nome, Alaska. Previously, she has also worked as a program assistant, deejay and radio producer. During her time at KNOM, she won the Alaska Broadcaster’s Association award for the best COVID-19 response, as well as awards from the Alaska Press Club for feature and arts reporting.
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