Dignity U Wear/Suits for Soldiers: Helping our veterans

Last night’s networking/fundraising event at Brooks Brothers (Dignity U Wear’s corporate sponsor), reinforced the mission of two wonderful organizations.

After Brooks Brothers CEO and Luxottica director Claudio Del Vecchio welcomed guests, Dignity’s executive director Barbara Truncellito gave an update. Since its founding 13 years ago by Holocaust survivor Henri Landwirth (philanthropist and veteran of the Korean War), Dignity has delivered $133 million of apparel and accessories to more than 300 social service agencies. Last week, they sent more than 50,000 units of brand new clothes to tornado victims in Oklahoma. In December, they delivered $1 million worth of merchandise to victims of Hurricane Sandy. Said Truncellito, “Because we own a warehouse, we can deliver clothes in the exact sizes that recipients need. Our transportation partner, CSX, helps us route donations quickly across the country. No other non-profit provides this service to the needy. We call it ‘Dignity’.”

Dignity began working with Suits for Soldiers in June 2012 through Brooks Brothers’ generous donation of $1 million worth of fine men’s suits. Dignity is now helping 50 veterans per month through this program, customizing each gift as a personalized thank you for each soldier’s service to our country.

The highlight of last night’s event: Jorlui Sillau, a veteran who’d served in Iraq, got up there and tried to articulate the emotional impact of receiving his unexpected gift of a brand new suit in his exact size along with shirts, ties and accessories. The amazing feeling that his service was genuinely valued. The excitement from his wife and kids. The renewed hope that the next chapter of his life might actually be okay.

A special thanks to menswear vendors PVH, Randa, Perry Ellis, Tailorbyrd, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger and Li & Fung through Fishman Tobin. To donate or get involved: btruncellito@dignityuwear.org.

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