MOUNT VERNON — Operation Brotherhood seeks donations of hygiene and nonperishable food items to create care packages for distribution at the VA Maine Homeless Veteran Stand Down in October.

Items needed include razors, shaving cream, bar soap, lip balm, baby wipes, deodorant, female hygiene items, protein bars, snack items, canned good and other food items.

Donated items can be dropped off between 4 and 8 p.m. Thursdays, 4 to 9 p.m. Fridays and 2 to 6 p.m. Saturdays at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1603, 588 Minot Ave. They also can be dropped off at The Hair Gallery, Water Street, in Augusta; the VFW Service Officer office on the Togus campus, area VFW posts and American Legion Post 153, in New Auburn.

The nonprofit organization is dedicated to intervening in veteran and first responder suicide was created through the vision of Jason Wyman, president of the organization. A Maine native, Army medic and serving in deployments in Iraq, Wyman decided he wanted to do more for all the first responders, regardless of the critical aspects of their jobs. He feels that so many groups are left out because they might fit into the status of the recent published numbers of suicide rates, according to a news release from the organization.

For more information, to make a donation, and/or learn about volunteer opportunities, call 514-4190 or 293-8044.

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