A group of veterans in Boston currently spend their weeks walking through the city's back alleys and bridge underpasses, looking for those who are struggling with life after service.

The Washington Post reported that the state of Massachusetts has recruited a team of veterans who were once living without permanent shelter to help reduce the state's homeless veteran population. The former servicemembers forge connections with those still living on the streets, help them find a home – typically an apartment subsidized by the government – and then continue to check up on them every week so they do not become homeless again – something the team of veterans knows well.

"When [the homeless veterans] say, 'Oh, you don't know what I'm talking about,' I can say, 'Yeah, I do, because I was there myself,'" team leader Christopher Doyle told the news source.

Boston's new method of reducing its rate of veterans homelessness is part of a larger effort. According to The Boston Globe, the state revealed a master plan in early 2013 to eliminate veterans homelessness by 2015. 

Although the veterans homelessness rate has declined by 24 percent since 2010, a recent report from the Department of Housing and Urban Development found that on a single night in January 2013, there were more than 57,000 veterans living without permanent shelter in the U.S.