Westchester Resident Naomi Kaplan Pledges $250,000 in Support of Local Veterans

The following is a press release from the Family Services of Westchester:

Multi-Year Grant from Naomi Kaplan Will Fund FSW’s New Naomi Kaplan Veterans Outreach and Support Program 

Family Services of Westchester, Inc. (FSW) is delighted to announce that Naomi Kaplan, longtime resident of Westchester County, has pledged a donation of $250,000 over five years to support our Veterans Outreach and Support Program. The program, which is housed at FSW’s Lanza Family Center for All Ages in White Plains, will now be known as the Naomi Kaplan Veterans Outreach and Support Program. This is fitting, not only because of this pledge of support but because Mrs. Kaplan was instrumental in launching FSW’s initial efforts to serve veterans in Westchester County.

A grant in 2011 from Mrs. Kaplan enabled FSW to conduct a needs assessment of existing services for veterans in Westchester, identify gaps between needed services and the local service provider infrastructure, and then develop a model for a coordinated system of community based services to support veterans’ reentry into the community.

The assessment determined that veterans and military families in Westchester may experience greater difficulties than those in other locales as the support and social connections that come from being attached to a military base are not available. Working closely with Mrs. Kaplan, FSW then established the Veterans Outreach and Support Program, which was designed to provide direct services to veterans and their families to help with their emotional, educational, employment and family needs. Since that time, FSW has served over 1,200 Westchester County veterans and their families and has firmly established its reputation as a trusted source of support.

This new five-year grant, to be matched each year by FSW, will ensure the continuation of the Case Management program, which helps veterans address issues such as homelessness, medical benefits, mental health concerns and employment. The case manager conducts an initial assessment with each veteran and/or spouse to identify areas of concern and formulate goals, provide advocacy and outreach, and follow up to ensure that the issues are resolved. The grant will also provide opportunities to create new initiatives to meet the changing needs of the veteran community.

“We are so grateful to Naomi Kaplan for ensuring that veterans in our community continue to have access to the support and services they so greatly deserve,” said Susan B. Wayne, President and CEO of FSW. “Naming the program in her honor is a fitting tribute to a philanthropist who is committed to making a difference in the lives of her neighbors in need.”

For additional information about the Naomi Kaplan Veterans Outreach and Support Program, please visit our website at: http://www.fsw.org/our-programs/veterans-outreach-and-support or call Eric Toth, Vice President for Programs, at 914-872-5259.

FSW runs a broad range of mental health and social service programs that benefit individuals and families throughout Westchester County. FSW’s programs run the gamut from adoption services to elder care, from home health care to youth residences and include chapters of such national programs as Big Brothers Big Sisters and Head Start. The agency’s 450 employees and 350 volunteers operate out of seven offices throughout the county. To learn more about FSW, check out the agency’s website at www.fsw.org or contact Caitlin Halle (914) 305-6876 or challe@fsw.org.