Operation Stand Down provides weekend relief for homeless veterans

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - More than 100 homeless veterans are flocking to the True Light Church for a weekend of free services.

For almost a decade, 'Operation Stand Down'(OSD) has hosted a weekend to give homeless vets a break from the streets. OSD buses the vets in for the event.

"We feed them, we give them clothes, we have the VA doctors upstairs so they can get a cursory exam," said Harold Stogsdill, the OSD chairman.

The nonprofit supplies the vets with everything they can carry from clothes and shoes to toiletries and eyeglasses. OSD also provides resources to lead them to housing and job opportunities.

"No veteran that served in the United States military should be homeless at all. They gave their blood, sweat, and tears for our freedom," said OSD volunteer Charles Moses. He is one of many who travel from out of state to help the effort.

Last year, Operation Stand Down hosted more than 100 homeless veterans, both male and female. Everything from the clothes to the facility -- and its hot showers -- are donated.

"It helps me to know that I'm helping my comrades-in-arms," said Stogsdill.

Vets staying for the weekend say it's a nice change to feel welcomed, even if only for a few days.

"What matters the most is knowing that there are people who do care," said Pete Clark, a homeless U.S. Army veteran. "Veterans' Day, everyone is like 'oh we appreciate that,' the rest of the year, 'it's like forget you.' It makes me mad sometimes. But these people here, they're some of the best around."

Outside of the three-day event, Operation Stand Down works with other organizations to do case work to get more veterans off of the streets.

They also are placing jars and boxes outside of businesses to collect money that go straight to helping more homeless vets. Learn more about that effort and OSD here.

1 Comment

  • August

    Homeless Veterans have had enough absolutely worthless serices & counseling; they need IMMEDIATE REGULAR HOUSING & LIVING-WAGE JOBS!

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