ANNUALLY, DURING ITS CONFERENCE & EXPO, HR FLORIDA supports a charity making a significant impact in Florida communities. The Florida Veterans Foundation (FVF) was selected as the charity for 2017. On day two of the conference, and as a part of the charity initiative, the veterans were recognized for their service to the country. At about 8:30 that morning, each veteran was introduced, called to the stage and recognized with a Veteran Service Medal provided by the Florida Veterans Foundation and presented by Florida Senator Victor Torres.
Veterans from Pensacola to the Keys covered the stage at the HR Florida State Council’s (HR Florida) 39th Annual Conference & Expo in August. So, what do veterans and an HR conference have in common?
In 2008, the Florida Legislature established the FVF as a direct support organization to the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs (FDVA). The foundation operates for the direct and indirect benefit of the veterans of Florida, the FDVA and veteran service organizations. The FVF is also a nonprofit organization operating for charitable and educational purposes under Section 501(c)(3).
HR Florida’s mission is to engage members of local chapters, partnering and educating communities on emerging human resource trends and providing strategic direction to those that they serve.
“Bringing awareness to and aiding those in the community in need is an essential part of those in the HR profession,” said HR Florida Conference Charity Chair Kim Boulahanis. “With support from chapter members and conference attendees, we were able to raise money and awareness.”
HR Florida’s 10 districts, made up of 28 local chapters, worked with the appropriate Veterans Service Office in their area to identify a veteran in need. Once identified, veterans were provided with assistance in resume writing, job searching and interviewing. They were then invited to attend the HR Florida Conference with their families. They were presented season passes to amusement parks, gift cards for meals and entertainment, gift baskets, gift cards and much more.
“The charity was very well received by HR professionals. There was an intense passion to help our service veterans in any way possible. It was a good opportunity to give back to those that have given so much to our country. I also believe it brought awareness to the challenges and struggles that our veterans face after leaving their military career,” Boulahanis said.
Conference attendees and partners donated $34,622.50 in cash and in-kind gifts for FVF. Donations are still being accepted on the Florida Veterans Foundation website at floridaveteransgfoundation.org.