A while ago, now, President Barack Obama asked cities across the country to try to end their veteran homelessness problems by the end of 2015. In Riverside, California, city officials say they did so in the 11th hour.
Originally, the city believed it only had 41 homeless veterans living there, and housed them successfully, but another survey found the number was more than double the initial estimate, according to a report from the Riverside Press Enterprise. However, city officials successfully got the 89th and last of them to be identified into a positive housing situation on Dec. 31. Since then, however, more such homeless veterans have been identified, so the city is still working to help them as well.
"Do we understand that we are never going to get to … zero? Absolutely," Monica Sapien, the city's homeless services coordinator, told the newspaper. "Homelessness is always going to exist. But there's a streamlined process now should we encounter a homeless veteran. That is absolutely huge."
This is part of a massive effort being taken by many cities across the country in accordance with Obama's goal. Many have already done what Riverside has, effectively ending their homelessness problems, and a large number are close to doing so as well. Veterans who are struggling with tenuous housing situations or homelessness therefore need to know that there are a number of avenues they might be able to pursue to help them deal with it.
Likewise, former servicemembers struggling with other types of problems, be they large or small, will probably have a number of organizations in their local areas that can help them. These can be public or private, but the safety nets in place for veterans are often quite helpful.