Local Airmen volunteer, aid local homeless veterans

By Airman 1st Class Amanda Lovelace, Peterson-Schriever Garrison Public Affairs / Published September 17, 2020

SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE,Colo. — Airmen from Peterson and Schriever Air Force Bases volunteered in support of the 22nd Annual Stand Down for Colorado’s Homeless Veterans in Colorado Springs, Colorado, Sept. 15.

The stand down, organized by the El Paso County Homeless Veterans Coalition, aims to provide homeless veterans with winter clothing and a host of state and government services to remedy their needs.

“These are veterans… someone’s mother, father, child, grandparent,” said Lt. Col. Michael Schriever, 2nd Space Operations Squadron commander. “Someone who we can show our common bond through military service, connect with for an afternoon and try to bring some comfort to their lives.”

During the event, volunteers help homeless veterans identify earned service benefits that may transition them into a stable home and work environment.

“As active duty and civilian members of the Air Force and Space Force, we show care and pride in our community and those who served before us,” Schriever said.

More than 170 veterans per year were helped during this annual event.

“Each veteran was checked in by volunteers and vetted for eligibility,” Schriever said.

After veterans received their respective services, volunteers escorted them to collect winter clothing, personal items and boots in their respective sizes. Lastly, the veterans were provided with a box lunch from a local restaurant.

In previous years, the event also offered services such as hearing tests, dental exams, haircuts and vaccinations.

However, due to COVID-19, this year’s event had to be scaled down to less service booths.

“We receive feedback every year on how much it means to these veterans to share the day with fellow military in uniform who understand their service,” Schriever said. “[The veterans] swap stories and have someone listen to them and care about their needs in a manner that we do every day in our military family environment.”

The annual event has been supported by Airmen from Peterson and Schriever since 2008.

“Events like these remind us of those who came before us and to remember they’re still a part of our family,” said Airman 1st Class Erica Lynne, 50th Operations Support Squadron student.

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