Thursday, October 13, 2016 (Issue #1)
by Alana Branch, Veterans Affairs Editor
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The Department of Veterans Affairs, in recent years, has been in the spotlight, and not necessarily the good kind, particularly when it comes to health care for veterans nationwide. But little light is being shown on some non-profit organizations in Connecticut whose mission is to serve and protect the very people who have done the same for them at one point in their lives. Take Homes for the Brave, for example.
One of the various issues that have continued to plague veterans for years is homelessness. According to its website as per today, approximately 300 veterans in Connecticut are homeless.
Why are veterans homeless? The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans lists the common factors, among them being substance abuse and military jobs that can’t transport into civilian territory.
Homes for the Brave, in partnership with the Connecticut Department of Labor, and located in Bridgeport, has been providing veterans safe housing and the tools to get them back on track, including vocational training, job placement, and mental health and addiction services, since its conception in 2002.
There are four programs in the organization that cater to not just veterans but non-veterans as well. The majority of the veterans’ population that are homeless happens to be male. The programs are listed as follows:
- Homes of the Brave: 42 bed transitional housing program available to homeless male veterans.
- Waldorf House: nine units of permanent housing for formerly homeless male veterans.
- Veterans Service Center: any homeless veteran can drop right in.
- Female Soldiers: Forgotten Heroes: 15 bed transitional housing program for homeless female veterans.
According to the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, about eight percent of homeless veterans are females. Overall, veterans in need have a right to know where to go and who to talk to. Perhaps more light on such organizations will bring them out to shine. For more information, go to homesforthebrave.org, or call toll free at (855) 249-8394.