Mobile’s Community-Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) employees and volunteers distributed nearly 200 boxes of grocery items during a June 16 event. The event was designed to support Veterans and their families experiencing food instability.

Equal Employment Opportunity manager Anita Urquhart prepares bags of food for distribution.

The drive-thru food distribution event was the first of its kind at the clinic in Mobile, Alabama. It was designed to provide a contactless drive-through experience, where employees distributed pre-loaded bags to Veterans, caregivers and other eligible individuals who remained in their vehicles.

Pictured above, nurse Terri Milton delivers a box of food during the drive-thru food distribution and COVID-19 vaccination clinic.

“There are so many individuals who have been impacted by the events of last year, from the global health crisis to the hurricane which impacted our area,” said Marthena Moffett, the assistant chief of Laboratory and Pathology. “Our Veterans are always our top priority. Being able to provide them some form of respite during these challenging times is at the core of who we are as an organization.”

And an opportunity to receive no-appointment COVID-19 vaccination

Veterans and other VA beneficiaries were also provided an opportunity to receive a no-appointment COVID-19 vaccination during the event. Mobile nursing staff were available to administer the vaccine to recipients in their vehicles.

Moffett organized the event as part of the Minority Veterans Program with assistance from Voluntary Services. She coordinated with Feeding the Gulf Coast, a Feeding America regional member.

Moffett said the donations were sorted and distributed by VA Mobile employees volunteering for the three-hour event, and Employees were joined by representatives of local Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and Disabled American Veterans (DAV), as well as individuals from local Vet Centers.

These organizations lending a hand are our ideal of serving those who have served

“The outpouring of good will toward our nation’s heroes is overwhelming,” Moffett said. “There are so many resources available to Veterans in the Mobile area. Having each of these organizations willing to lend a hand to some of our Veterans who could be experiencing challenging times reinforces our ideal of serving those who have served.”

Moffett said Volunteer Services continuously accepts donations of non-perishable items for distribution to Veterans in the health care system’s five locations. Donations can also include toiletries.

The event represented the fourth such giveaway Mobile VA has hosted since 2020.

The Biloxi VA Medical Center, along with the Mobile, Pensacola, Eglin and Panama City VA Clinics, is part of the Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System. The health care system is headquartered in Biloxi, Mississippi. It provides a variety of medical outpatient services to more than 77,000 Veterans.

Bruce Cummins is a public affairs specialist for the Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System.

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Published on Jun. 26, 2021

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