50K grant from King Quality helps spread the word for Angels of Long Island


Angels of Long Island is the latest local charitable organization to find an angel close to home.

The charity — which operates thrift stores in Patchogue and Mastic, along with a free twice-weekly farmers market — has been awarded a $50,000 grant from King Quality Cares that its founder hopes will build awareness and support for the Angels’ work for needy Long Islanders.

The grant from the philanthropic arm of King Quality Construction, the Bohemia-based roofing, siding and windows contracting giant, allowed Angels of Long Island to fund a televised spot that is airing all month on News 12. 

The 90-second video features founder Debbie Loesch alongside King Quality chief executive Jeff Brett and aims to boost donations of food and money to the charity’s free Mastic grocery store and its Patchogue thrift shop. The money raised from sales at the thrift shop goes to helping those in need.

“She truly is an angel,” Brett said. “In 2015, she started [Angels of Long Island] to help just one family and now she has 300 families a week that depend on her coming in for toothpaste, cleaning products, socks, paper towels, paper plates, the basics they can’t afford.

“So many people are in need and she’s there.”

What Loesch started as an online group to assist a single family now has more than 25,000 followers on Facebook and the nonprofit has expanded services to include the thrift stores, a donation center and a community outreach location.

“I didn’t expect it to take off the way it did,” Loesch said. “But the need is here on Long Island.”

She concedes that raising money and awareness has not been easy, with a GoFund Me campaign launched last September as the charity suffered a late-night burglary at its Herkimer Street location in Mastic and endured a rough year financially. 

That’s where King Quality comes in, after an executive there flagged Angels of Long Island as a potential recipient for the $50,000 charitable grant awarded monthly by a company that Brett started in 1992 with “a tiny little office, $500 and a dream.”

“Long Island has taken care of King Quality,” he said. “We wouldn’t be successful without Long Island.”

So when Michele Zervakos, chief operating officer at King Quality, introduced Brett to what Angels of Long Island has been doing for the homeless and those affected by fires and domestic violence, the charity was an easy pick for the latest monthly grant, which Loesch called a “godsend.”

“I prayed for the help and I am hoping there are other Jeffs out there,” she said.

Habitat for Humanity of Long Island honored Brett as its 2023 Man of the Year after King Quality donated and installed roofs for several homes built by and for low-income families. 

The company has also provided $50,000 grants to fund television spots for local outfits that include L.I. Against Domestic Violence and John’s Crazy Socks of Farmingdale, which donates a portion of earnings to the Special Olympics and whose founder, John Lee Cronin, has Down Syndrome.

“I get to meet people that are incredible,” Brett said. “Their whole lives are about helping people.”

Loesch, who grew up in Bellport, is the latest to appear on-camera alongside Brett. The two happened to show up in matching eyeglass frames for the video shoot.

Its message, Loesch hopes, will attract new sources of support.

“The more people that know the better, because we’re still a new nonprofit and a lot of people don’t know what it is,” she said. 

With Loesch pointing to an increase in the number of customers at Angels of Long Island locations, she said the need for what the charity offers is greater than ever.

“I’m starting to see customers coming in for the first time and they’re telling their friends, so the stores are actually picking up,” she said. “But it’s not just poverty from those suffering from mental health or addiction, it’s poverty for working families. 

“At the end of the day, they don’t have money to go grocery shopping.” 

Top: Video still from the King Quality and Angels Long Island commercial airing on News 12.

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