I bet you think I choose to be homeless.
I bet you think I drink alcohol or take drugs.
I bet you think I am crazy, literally.
I bet you think I live off everyone else and don't want to work.
I don't fit in a box.
I don't have a label.
I am a human being.
I served for you.
I saw and did things that I hope you never have to do.
I wore this country's uniform proudly.
I am not an alcoholic and I don't take drugs. I do need help to get back on my feet.
So the next time you see me on the side of the road asking for money or laying in a park, remember, I don't fit in a box, I don't have a label, I am a human being. Be one too, and help.
Homeless Veteran Statistics and Information
Did you know?
* The PIT Count, a.k.a. Point in Time Count is comprised of volunteers accompanied by police asking people if they are homeless. It occurs once each year, usually in the coldest part of the winter. These counts are not accurate and unfortunately are used to base trends.
* According to the National Alliance to End Homelessness, Georgia has 9,499 people homeless each night through 2018.
*Agencies and organizations each define homelessness differently. Some require that you literally have to have lived on the street. Sleeping on the couch at a friend's house or in a car is not necessarily defined as homeless. Those great folks who do operate shelters are limited by the number of beds, their staff, and the funding they receive. Not everyone who goes to a homeless shelter receives a warm bed and the ugly truth is not everyone wants to risk themselves or their children in a homeless shelter.
* The Veterans Administration does not provide homes, apartments, etc. to Veterans experiencing homelessness. The VA does have programs to help and get them off the street, but they must be enrolled with the VA already and qualify. Not every Veteran qualifies and only about 40% of those who are eligible actually sign up with the VA at all.
* Homeless shelters cannot typically take in a Veteran in a wheelchair or with serious medical needs. They do not have the facilities or staff to manage them. Where are they supposed to go?
Bottom line, don't assume you know the how and why a person is homeless, and if you can give to help then do it.