Homeless Prevention at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton CA
A recent joint effort between The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced earlier this week their program Veterans Homelessness Prevention Demonstration Program (VHPDP) to help prevent Veteran homelessness. The agencies combined will be investing $15 million dollars to be disbursed among 5 communities near military bases.
Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton here in San Diego will be one of the communities to be a recipient of these funds. Camp Pendleton is set to receive $2 million dollars. In addition, the VA Medical Center in San Diego will receive $1 million dollars for Veteran medical care.
The VHPDP is targeted to assist those Veterans and their families as they return from Iraq and Afghanistan. Many Veterans returning home from war face challenging transitions to readjust and adapt back into society in a difficult economic time.
The program will offer grants to those eligible Veterans for housing, medical care, job training and employment services. By providing assistance in these areas the agencies are hoping with early intervention it will help decrease the tragic number of Veteran homelessness.
The VA will determine the eligible Veterans and recommend proper medical services that may be needed. HUD will then provide housing assistance in the way of security deposits, rental assistance, utility payments and will manage the cases. There will also be services available in the community to assist in child care and family services.
There are so many challenges that our Veterans face when returning from war. Not only financially, but also psychologically. The lifestyle change from one extreme to another can be devastating to our Veterans and their families. All parties involved suffer from loss, the stress of survival and confusion. As a mom of an Army soldier who served 18 months in Iraq, I understand only a portion of the struggles.
Homelessness, substance abuse and suicide among our Veterans are at staggering numbers. It is imperative that we take care of our men and women who have bravely fought for our freedom. I hope with the Veterans Homelessness Prevention Demonstration Program the assistance soldiers receive can make an impact on Veteran homelessness.
Thank you Veterans for your service to our country.