The Weekly Vista


- by Freddy Groves

Stand Downs for 2023

Stand Downs for 2023 are gearing up across the country, with more to take place as the weather warms up.

Stand Downs are one-, two- or three-day events for homeless veterans with varying services offered, depending on the length of the event. A location might have services ranging from medical screenings and dental care, benefits counseling (this can be for Department of Veterans Affairs, Social Security and food stamps) and legal advice, to housing assistance, clean clothing and showers, job search help, haircuts, substance abuse referrals/recovery and much more.

A wide variety of government agencies, individual groups and veteran service organizati­ons are on hand at each event to provide help to homeless veterans who attend. Some of those groups and agencies include Department of Labor, community service providers, VA medical centers and more.

To see the schedule for this year, go events.asp and either filter by date or state. More will be added as time goes on, so check back if there’s nothing in your area right now. You can also check the site for the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans ( for a list of 2023 Stand Downs.

If you find an event and know you want to participat­e, contact the people listed for that event. If you’ll likely need transporta­tion, be sure to tell them and then keep in touch.

And if you can volunteer, sign up soon so event organizers will know how much help they’ll have. Can you cook? Can you drive to pick up participan­ts for the event? Are you a barber? Any of those services and more will be welcome.

If you’re part of an organizati­on and want to provide services, contact the nearest VA medical center and ask for the VA Stand Down point of contact. Depending on the services you propose to provide, your group might be eligible for a grant to help with costs.

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