The American Legion Department of New Jersey gave major awards to local posts in Hoboken and Weehawken for their homeless veterans and community health initiatives, respectively.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
The ALDNJ awarded its 2020 Americanism Award to Tom Kennedy Hoboken American Legion Post 107 in honor its Homeless Veterans Home.
Led by Post 107 Commander John Carey, this project, which cut the ribbon a year ago, provides six veterans with affordable housing and access to comprehensive human services.
Post 107 began its road to affordable housing and homelessness response advocacy in the
wake of Hurricane Sandy, when its former building was demolished. Phase Two of the project will see the creation of 18 additional housing units.
Additionally, the ALDNJ awarded its 2020 Community Service Award to Weehawken American Legion Post 18 in honor of its Community Health Initiative.
Positioned for success by outgoing Post 18 Commander Christopher Page, Post 18 is at the forefront of efforts to expand community health and wellness services throughout North Hudson, in 2019 offering the area’s first ever Mental Health Day, its first ever Women’s Wellness Day, and events for families of children with disabilities.
Host to the North Hudson Partnership, Post 18 continues to connect North Hudson’s veterans and communities with critically needed services.
Two members of Post 18 were further commended by the American Legion Department of New Jersey.
Brett D’Alessandro earned the 2020 Homeless Veterans Outreach Award for his efforts to address homelessness. Backpacks For Life, which he founded to resource veterans in crisis, now operates throughout New Jersey.
Meanwhile, incoming Post 18 Commander Troy Mack earned the 2020 Distinguished Service Award – Individual Legionnaire for his role in leading Post 18’s Community Health Initiative, as well as Post 18’s Naturalization and Citizenship Initiative.
Partnering with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Post 18 helped local residents through the process to attain U.S. citizenship and hosted naturalization ceremonies
on Memorial Day and Veterans Day Weekends.
Furthermore, Parnika Agarwal, 10, of Bayonne American Legion Post 165, won a silver medal in the annual statewide coloring contest.
“Under the leadership of outgoing County Commander Jack Dunne, this successful record increased further with prestigious awards coming home to Posts in Hoboken, Bayonne, and North Hudson,” the American Legion of Hudson County said in a statement.