Life on a Shoestring
Jack wanted a ride to Mather. He is a very impulsive, homeless Veteran. Those impulses could be either life saving, or life threatening. It all depends. "But you got to give a ride to Cody, too."
"Cody! I'm supposed to find him, and take him to Sacramento Veterans Resource Center [SVRC]."
"I know right where he is. Let's get him." He was right near Shoestrings on Broadway.
"Hey!", Jack said. "It's homeless Monday!" Turns out every other Monday, an anonymous donor pays Shoestrings to feed the homeless. Jack explained to the proprietor that I was driving them to Sacramento. I qualified for a free hamburger and coke too. They were good.
Dropped off Jack at Mather, and hauled Cody to SVRC. Good thing I did too. Cody had a heart attack while he was at SVRC. Because he was not on the street, but receiving services, his life was saved.
That's life on a Shoestring.
You never know.
David Zelinsky /Service Officer
American Legion Post 119
Only Kindness, Inc. has been serving the homeless and at risk of homelessness population of El Dorado county for a number of years.
Since July of 2014, in collaboration with Veterans organizations, a separate Veterans fund has been established. In addition to helping Veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, the following services are being provided:
We're SO excited! We were recently awarded a contract with the County of
El Dorado to provide Veterans Services through a grant from MHSA (Mental Health Services Act).
The Veterans Outreach project is aimed at reaching Veterans who may be in need of behavioral health services. This population was identified as an underserved group during the Community Program Planning process.
Services provided under this project may include, but will not be limited to:
• Outreach to Veterans and families particularly those who are homeless or involved in the criminal justice system
• Outreach Workers will perform intake interviews and assessments for inclusion into the local Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) and to evaluate the immediate needs for referral to the Unmet Needs Team
• Provide linkage to needed resources, including behavioral health, physical health, housing, or other services, and follow-up to ensure linkages were successful
• Provide referrals to Behavioral Health for Veterans who exhibit symptoms, including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
• Service Connected Disability Benefit Application Assistance/Referrals
• Document processing including Civilian and Military ID’s
The project will also allow for ancillary supports to Veterans and families including, but not limited to assistance with housing costs, transportation, phones, food and emergency shelter.
• Provide outreach and linkage to services for approximately 100 Veterans and families annually
• Develop a single point of entry for homeless Veterans to receive needed services
• Assist Veterans to secure permanent and affordable housing
• Reduce the number of homeless Veterans in our community