Hampton VA Medical Center and the Hampton Military Affairs Committee Host the 2nd Annual Homeless Stand Down for At Risk Veterans.
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(Hampton, VA) To raise awareness of the impact of homelessness on the lives of our veterans in the Hampton Roads Community, the Hampton VA Medical Center (VAMC) homeless program staff and the Hampton Military Affairs Committee (MAC) are sponsoring a ‘Stand Down’ for homeless veterans and their family members and those who may be at risk of becoming homeless. The Homeless Veteran Stand Down will be held from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, November 15, 2014, at the Y. H. Thomas Community Center, 1300 Thomas St., Hampton, VA.
A ‘Stand Down’ is traditionally defined as a ceasing of all regular operations in order to focus upon, and direct all resources toward, a defined need. The Homeless Veteran Stand Down is a collaborative event between the Hampton VAMC and the Hampton MAC with additional support from Veteran Service Organizations, non-profit groups, and community service providers. The goal is to provide a full range of services and assistance to homeless veterans and their family members at one convenient location. The stand down will provide food, clothing, showers, health screenings and referrals to a variety of other necessary services, such as health and housing programs, employment assistance, and benefits and claims counseling. This stand down is a key component to the VA’s mission to end homelessness among Veterans by the end of 2015.
According to Michael Dunfee, Director of the Hampton VAMC, identifying and meeting the needs of homeless veterans is one of Veterans Affairs highest priorities, but also takes a community effort. "Our Stand Down for Homeless Veterans is a great opportunity to reach out to our surrounding community and alert them to citizens living among them who are in need, but might not know how to access the services that could help them. By joining together we can raise awareness locally about homelessness and help those at risk get the assistance they need. Homelessness affects us all.”
Mr. John Gately, Chairman of the Hampton MAC, noted that the first Homeless Veteran Stand Down, held in November of 2013, was a successful start, but that it was merely the first step in a long road to eradicating persistent homelessness in the Veteran community.
“We're delighted to partner with the Hampton VA Medical Center and over 200 volunteers again in this Stand Down. Obviously, it's very heartening to see so many rallying to the cause of assisting the homeless, even while we're fighting to eliminate Veteran homelessness entirely. Political, civic and other leaders are turning talk into real actions and are making a real difference. While progress is both measurable and encouraging, with 840,000 veterans in the state, best estimates suggest there are still 600-700 among them without shelter on any given night. Clearly there is still much more to be done,” Gately said.
For more information about the Homeless Veteran Stand Down Stand Down and additional programs to help homeless veterans or to refer homeless veteran’s in need of services, please contact Ms. Marti Chick-Ebey at Martha.Chick@va.gov or 722-9961 x1285 or visit the Hampton VAMC website at http://www.hampton.va.gov/ or the Hampton MAC website at http://www.hampton.gov/mac.
United States Department of Veteran Affairs
Contact: Daniel L. Henry Tel: 757.722.9961 ext. 3730
Cell: 240.899.9074E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org