Battle Buddy Center Grand Opening
On Thursday November 13, Fedcap, in partnership with NYSID (New York State Industries for the Disabled), City University of New York and the Veterans Resource Center at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, participated in the grand opening of a Battle Buddy Center at John Jay College.
The Battle Buddy Center, formerly housed at Fedcap’s West 19th Street location, serves as a drop-in center and gathering place for veterans. The new site includes a kitchen/dining area, two lounges, a computer room and close proximity to an array of services coordinated by John Jay’s Veterans Resource Center to address homelessness, joblessness and mental health issues among veterans.
The move of the Battle Buddy Center deepens Fedcap’s relationship to John Jay College, a venerable New York institution with important connections to Fedcap’s work. In particular it enhances our capacity to serve veterans. Fedcap Veterans services include Vets2Jobs, Veterans Connect2Careers, and training through our GI Bill-approved Career Design School. This year we also honored Veterans Day with our Celebration of ReServist Veterans.
The move of the Battle Buddy Center and the grand opening ceremony, which was attended by about 90 people, were both spearheaded by Fedcap COO Joe Giannetto.
"Fedcap is committed to helping all of our veterans achieve the best possible reintegration into civilian life and employment," Mr. Giannetto said. “We are proud to operate the Battle Buddy Center with our partners, and honored to give back to those who have served our nation.”
The Battle Buddy Center at John Jay College is the first in New York City and the seventh operated by NYSID in New York State. Together, the centers have hosted more than 11,000 veteran visits.
“NYSID supports job creation efforts for a diverse group of New Yorkers with disabilities through our member agencies and assists with veterans’ support programs, promoting quality of life for veterans as they reconnect to the New York State workforce,” said Ron Romano, NYSID president & CEO. “We recognize that creating educational and employment opportunities for service-disabled veterans and other New Yorkers who face barriers to employment is not only the right thing to do, it also improves our state’s economy and strengthens our communities.
Clarice Joynes, Executive Director of the Mayor's Office of Veterans' Affairs, told the audience that the participation of John Jay College and CUNY in the Battle Buddy Center provides veterans with better access to education to prepare them for the workforce. A decorated veteran of the United States Marine Corps, Ms. Joynes said that it takes a village to care for veterans. “We greatly welcome these partnerships,” she said.
Mr. Giannetto reminded the audience, which included a number of student veterans, that Fedcap was founded in 1935 by three World War 1 veterans seeking expanded job opportunities for disabled veterans. He recounted the history of the Battle Buddy Center that Fedcap operated with NYSID on W. 19th Street, and thanked NYSID, CUNY and John Jay for the resources that they are providing and their commitment to veterans. “These partnerships help to ensure the academic and professional success of veterans, which fits Fedcap’s mission of helping those we serve to become economically independent,” he said.