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Prince George’s County Hosts 2nd Annual Veteran Stand Down and Homeless Resource Day

One Stop, One Day, One Goal: Providing Much Needed Resources to the County’s Homeless
Landover, MD –This year marks the second year that Prince George’s County hosted a Veterans Stand Down and Homeless Resource Day. The free event was held on Saturday, November 3, 2012, at the Wayne K. Curry Sports and Learning Complex. Over 300 homeless veterans, individuals and families were provided with an array of “one-stop” services including medical services, dental services, eviction prevention, utility turn-off prevention, employment assistance, showers, VA benefits and more.
“Many of our veterans now find themselves homeless or at risk of homelessness–men and women who, with love and respect for this great country, offered themselves in service to our country,” said Edward Chow Jr., Secretary of the Maryland Department of Veteran Affairs. “Some served in peacetime, others during periods of war. Some served overseas, some at home. But what we should always remember is that all of them served and are in need of our help and support. We recognize and appreciate the community support for this event, including the current military personnel who supported and volunteered as guides-navigating the participants to the various service stations. Raising awareness, connecting veterans to available resources and providing critical services to our veterans is paramount to the State of Maryland.”
Once an individual or family becomes homeless, they often face considerable systemic challenges to regaining steady employment and housing, such as a lack of access to an official government identification card, preventative healthcare services, and employment assistance. By offering these services — and many more — in one centralized location, Prince George’s County made it easier for homeless persons to access resources necessary to help themselves.
“This resource day event provided the homeless with a wide range of preventive and direct services from our public, private, non-profit and faith community partners,” said Gloria L. Brown, Director of the Prince George’s County Department of Social Services. “Every year, more families struggle to manage in these difficult economic times and the recent impact of Hurricane Sandy only illustrates the importance of accessible services to individuals and families in need.
Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect and we thank all who partnered with us to ensure each person left having uniquely experienced the caring and compassionate touch of a fellow human being.”
The event included free transportation from eleven locations across the County. In addition, individual guides provided assistance navigating the over 80 exhibitors offering a wide-range of services including the Prince George’s County Health Department’s mobile dental unit on hand to address the dental needs of men, women and children.
“I’m so thrilled that this is going on,” said Mary, a homeless resident living in Brandywine. “I got a shower, food, a haircut and a bag to take with me filled with food, water and toiletries. This has been a real blessing to me.”
In FY 2012, the Prince George’s County Department of Social Services and its community partners provided emergency shelter for more than 1,000 individuals. There are three county year-round shelters and one hypothermia shelter with a nightly capacity of 186 year-round and 50 seasonal beds.
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Filed in: Prince George's County

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