Returning home to the country after deployment in a war-torn country can be a bittersweet moment for our troops. Yes, they are finally reunited with their loved ones, and they can rest easy knowing that they no longer have to engage in combat, risk their lives, and face death and destruction.
However, the aftermath of warfare can leave more than just battle scars. As a matter of fact, many of our veterans end up facing many problems such as disability, mental disorders, unemployment, substance abuse, poverty, and homelessness.
Homelessness has always been a major concern for our retired service members, with an estimated 1.5 million veterans at risk of living on the streets to beg for alms. Studies show that veterans are more likely to experience homelessness than other sectors of the population. This is especially true for those who are impoverished, victims of substance abuse, lacking support from family and friends, or suffering from mental disorder. Veterans diagnosed as suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injury were found to have a higher risk of homelessness.
Here are facts and figures you should know about our unfortunate veterans who have no place to call home.
- 11 percent of the adult homeless population comprised of veterans.
- 92 percent of homeless veterans are males, with 57 percent of them being white.
- 70 percent have substance abuse issues.
- 50 percent have serious mental disorders.
- More than 50 percent have disabilities.
Between January 2015 and January 2016, there was a 17 percent decline in the number of our homeless vets, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
Although the number of homeless veterans has dropped, the issue is far from resolved. It’s really disheartening to see many of our former military men and women living on the streets. Instead of being feted as heroes for all the sacrifices they made in protecting our rights and our nation’s security, many of them have been forgotten and left to fend for themselves as street beggars.
Resources for Homeless U.S. Veterans
Do you know of former military members who are in need of housing assistance? Here are some housing programs intended to help our veterans and their families.
This housing assistance program seeks to improve the lives of our vets who have served in Afghanistan and Iraq by providing them with mortgage-free houses. About 200 homes have been built since it was developed in 2004.
In collaboration with the VA, this program offers our veterans a safe and affordable home near healthcare providers, making it easier for them to gain access to healthcare. It offers other supportive services for homeless vets including financial management assistance, community gardens, technology centers, fitness centers, socializing areas, and job training.
A partnership program between HUD and VA, HUD-VASH joins HUD housing vouchers and VA services to assist homeless vets and their families in finding permanent homes. The program currently has the largest percentage and number of retired service members who have experienced repeated or long-term homelessness.
This VA program is offered every year by the Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV). It funds community agencies that are committed to serving homeless vets. Programs that are eligible to receive funds are those with service centers (crisis intervention, education, counseling, case management, etc.) or supportive housing of up to two years.
This VA partner program aims to help homeless vets in three ways:
- Conducting outreach programs to seek out vets who need help;
- Connecting homeless and at-risk vets;
- Collaborating with employers, housing providers, nonprofits, and federal, state, or local agencies, to expand affordable housing options and job opportunities for vets who are about to be freed from homelessness
Transform the Lives of Homeless Vets by Donating an Old Car
Do you have a car that you’ve long wanted to dispose of? Do you know that you can get rid of it for a meaningful cause and not spend a single dime in doing so? Veteran Car Donations makes this incredible deal possible!
Donating your unwanted car or any other vehicle can make a huge difference in the lives of our homeless vets and their families. Your car donations will enable our nonprofit partners, including Homes for Our Troops, to provide more services to more of our heroes. For instance, a truck or van that’s of no use to you anymore can provide resources to help build a home for one of our nation’s struggling veterans.
Just give us a call or fill out our online donation form once you’ve made the decision to donate. Don’t worry about the towing or the paperwork. We’ll take care of everything!
Donate now by contacting us at 877-594-5822! We can’t wait to make a difference in the lives of our veterans with your help!