After 20 years in the Army, former First Sgt. Eddie Miller was in and out of addiction, homeless on the streets of Miami. Another day, another year, those weren’t expectations Miller could take for granted when he arrived with nearly 50 other homeless veterans for the Operation Sacred Trust orientation in 2012.
Fifteen homeless Veteran families will have a chance to move into permanent housing at next weekend’s Miami Homeless Veterans Stand Down thanks to an initiative funded by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
Nearly 5.5 million Americans are caring for service members and Veterans, many of whom are impacted by post traumatic stress. The VA is expanding innovative efforts to help Veterans and their loved ones learn to be healing to each other through the Warrior to Soul Mate program.
Like Norman Cooper III, Every Homeless Veteran Has a Name, Story and Dreams that Can Still Come True
Before he knew it, Norman Cooper III, a decorated Army Veteran, had lost it all. His career, money, marriage, and the family to which he’d long been devoted were gone in what must have seemed like a blurry nightmare as he became one of 100,000 homeless Veterans in America. Two years later, he’s reclaimed his life and dreams that have not been forgotten.
The Department of Veterans Affairs is investing $300 million to end homelessness for America’s Veteran families, such as this father and son in Miami.
Veterans impacted by visible and invisible wounds of war, separated by generations almost half a century apart, came together this weekend in Mobile, Alabama to learn skills to win the battle for the health, resiliency and happiness of their marriages. The program is part of an innovative effort funded by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Patient Centered Care and Cultural Transformation Initiative to help improve the health of Veterans nationwide.
Ending homelessness for Veterans is not just about housing – healthy, stable relationships matter too
Ending homeless for America’s veterans is not just about stable, affordable housing. Evidence-based skills training for creating and sustaining healthy, lasting relationships with family members, neighbors and co-workers is also vital to their long-term success.
An innovative initiative funded by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is helping Veterans overcome challenges reintegrating into their homes, communities and civilian jobs.
“More than one Veteran has talked about having it all one day and then finding himself living on the streets, a car, storage unit, bus stop, train station or abandoned building the next, having lost everything,” says Miguel Marquez, Outreach Specialist for Operation Sacred Trust.
After four years of Army service, including deployment to the Middle East, Gabby Cornett saw the lasting impact on her brother firsthand. His struggles inspire her daily commitment to help South Florida Veterans reconnect with themselves, loved ones, and access the resources they’ve earned.
With a husband who is a Veteran and stepson currently deployed to Afghanistan, Denise Martino can relate to the unique needs of Veteran families. As Intake Specialist for Operation Sacred Trust, she’s often the first point of contact for struggling South Florida Veterans who reach out with the hope of ending homelessness.
Operation Sacred Trust’s Yvette Costa is Helping End Homelessness for South Florida’s Veteran Families
Yvette Costa, a Case Manager for Operation Sacred Trust, has helped end homelessness for hundreds of Veteran families in Broward and Miami-Dade counties. Although Ms. Costa is the daughter of a Veteran, it was ultimately the help she and her family received from the Department of Veterans Affairs during difficult times that led her to dedicate her life to serving the Veteran community.
Hampton VA Chief of Chaplains Sue Cross encourages her staff to have dreams and works to give them resources to be successful. She says PAIRS training helped her communicate when she needs support and encouragement.