The Credit Union’s check comes on top of $5,500 the local ‘The Voice’ singer and co-performer Kaleb Lee raised in a hometown concert at Presqu’ile Winery
ORCUTT, Calif. (Sept. 28, 2019) — Belting tunes with a backdrop of the setting Santa Maria sun, local singing hero Pryor Baird and fellow The Voice participant Kaleb Lee had their concert to benefit female veterans get a huge boost from a local financial institution.
While Saturday’s concert at Presqu’ile Winery raised $5,555 in ticket sales for Operation WEBS — a nonprofit dedicated to creating housing solutions for at-risk women veterans — representatives from CoastHills Credit Union also dropped by to deliver a $5,000 donation pledged at the 2nd Annual Tiny Home Gala over the summer.
“Pryor is so supportive of us to return to Presqu’ile on such short notice to do a show for our benefit,” said Sandy Blair, CEO and Founder of Operation WEBS (Women Empowered Build Strong. “We are blessed to have had such awesome support from Cameron Porter (the Estates Manager) at Presqu’ile to set up this show in just a few months.”
Porter affirmed: “We are proud to support the empowering work of Operation WEBS and could not be more delighted to witness our community coming together to enjoy great music for a great cause.”
Baird, a former top contender on The Voice television show, said it best in an interview with Parade magazine, “We live in the greatest country in the world, man, and the reason we get to do that is because people put their life on the line every single day. It doesn’t matter what side of the fence you’re on, we wake up every day free. We’re all sitting here right now and able to do this and have a peaceful conservation with no problems.”
Operation WEBS was able to sell 129 tickets.
Kris Andrews, the 1st Vice Chairman on the volunteer board of directors at CoastHills, attended the gala and was moved by Blair’s drive and dedication to support our homeless female veteran population. Andrews recommended the cause to CoastHills President/CEO Paul Cook, and the Credit Union mobilized in time to make a donation at the concert.
The event was a collaboration of support to help raise awareness and funding for Operation WEBS.
The Operation WEBS mission is “truly from my own experience of separating (from) the Air Force and losing everything,” Blair said, “because I was over qualified and couldn’t get a job.”
Sadly, this experience is not unique to Blair, but is a common experience our female veterans face when reintegrating into the civilian world. Blair humbly expressed that “This community has been above and beyond anything, anywhere, that I have ever lived and experienced.”
It is when good people with great hearts come together around such a vital issue, that change occurs. These women have served their country and are coming home, only to find themselves homeless and often jobless.
According to the Department of Defense, female veterans are three times more likely to become homeless and 215% more likely to commit suicide than their male counterparts. Providing safety and shelter is the first step in a very large process to make sure these women don’t fall through the cracks and reintegrate successfully.
Blair said that to date, Operations WEBS has “housed four (female veterans), and three of them are still living in our Orcutt Stability Home. … Ten years later fulfilling this dream. I am blessed to be doing that here in Orcutt, here in California and on the Central Coast.”
California’s 35th District Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham chose Operation WEBS as “Nonprofit of the Month” this August. This award was one of many recent recognitions to include the “Veteran of the Month” by Santa Barbara County Supervisor Steve Lavagnino as well as a “Congressional Recognition Certificate” from Representative Salud Carbajal.
For more information, visit us at https://OperationWEBS.org or contact our Director of Communications & Event Marketing, Cait Casey, at (805) 865-6318 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo: Pryor Baird, Paul Cook, Sandy Blair, Kris Andrews, Kaleb Lee, Caity Casey, & Keisha Waldron
FACTS About Operation WEBS
- Founded June 6, 2018
- Awarded California Legislature Assembly Certificate of Recognition, Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham; June 13th, 2019
- Awarded Certificate of Special Recognition, Member of Congress Salud Carbajal; June 13th, 2019
- Awarded “Veteran of the Month” by County Supervisor Steve Lavagnino
- Federal Tax ID: 83-0935231
FACTS About Women Veterans
- 3X more likely to be homeless than our veteran brothers
- 215% more likely to commit suicide.
- Since 2008, the number of homeless women veterans is increasing while homelessness in general is decreasing (2017 report).
- 1 Million: Approx. number of women veterans under 50 and over 50 (2016).
- In 2015, over 60% of women veterans were between 25 and 34.
- By 2045, the number of women veterans is expected to double to 18%.
Reference for above facts:
Article Reference to Parade Magazine quoting Pryor Baird: https://parade.com/668303/paulettecohn/the-voices-pryor-baird-music-is-both-a-blessing-and-a-curse/
PR Contact: Caity Casey, Director of Communications & Events Marketing, 805-865-6318/ email@example.com