Volunteers giving veterans helping hands with ‘My Brother Vinny’ initiative


NEW YORK (CBS News) — On Veterans Day many communities take time to honor the men and women who served our country.

But there’s a group of volunteers who make sure veterans have what they need all year long.

When Wayne Reese isn’t working his full-time job as a groundskeeper, he is volunteering his time, working hard to help veterans in need. Reese is a volunteer with My Brother Vinny, which is a nonprofit that brings donated goods, like furniture, to veterans in need of a helping hand.

Reese is a veteran himself and was first introduced to the non-profit when he was released from a VA hospital five years ago. Even with a housing stipend, he couldn’t afford furniture for his new apartment.

My Brother Vinny supplied him with a bed and couch.

“For me it was a life changer, not sleeping on the floor, as opposed to sleeping on a bed,” said Reese.

My Brother Vinny is run entirely by volunteers. Founder and Director Paula Miritello created the organization in honor of her brother Vincent who passed away 19 years ago.

“When I go in someone’s home and I realize that they are on the floor and if we don’t give them a bed, that will be their circumstance. I can’t explain the joy I get. It’s a pure joy,” said Miritello.

My Brother Vinny has helped over 900 veterans in the New York area, and will hit the 1,000 mark early next year.

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