BOSTON (WWLP) – At a fundraising ceremony Thursday, a total of $71,000 was raised for the Helmets to Hardhats program, to help honor the contributions and sacrifices of veterans.

This money raised through Massachusetts Building Trades Unions is to help create life-changing career pathways for veterans. More than 75,000 men and women hold jobs and benefits in the union-building trades, according to Massachusetts Building Trades.

Massachusetts Building Trades Union’s new partnership with the nonprofit, Helmets to Hardhats is to help veterans transition into even more well-paying union jobs in construction. An effort that began with Helmets to Hardhats in 2003.

“The Helmets to Hardhats program helped me have a smooth transition to working in the Carpenters’ Union,” said Cory Noel, a member of Carpenters Local 239. “Helmets to Hardhats sped up every process of my transition and has helped me out tremendously.”

“We are honored to work with Helmets to Hardhats and to provide career opportunities for our returning veterans,” said Frank Callahan, President of Massachusetts Building Trades Unions. “There will always be a place in the building trades for these brave men and women who epitomize selflessness, discipline, honor, and commitment. They embody the values of our unions.”