United States Senators Elizabeth Warren and Edward J. Markey and Representatives Richard Neal, Jim McGovern, Stephen Lynch, Niki Tsongas and Bill Keating today applauded more than $339,000 in grants awarded to five Massachusetts community organizations serving veterans. These U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) grants will help the community agencies purchase vans to provide transportation services to homeless veterans.
"Helping organizations that support our vets here in Massachusetts is an example of good partnership between the federal government and our local organizations," said Senator Warren. "These awards will help these agencies continue their important outreach work to help our homeless veterans. Our armed service men and women put their lives on the line to keep our families safe, and we have an obligation to do everything we can to support veterans in our communities."
"All our veterans are heroes, but even heroes need help," said Senator Markey. "Those who fought for our country deserve a safe, stable and affordable place to call home. This funding will help reach the worthy goal of ending veterans homelessness in Massachusetts by 2015. I will continue to work with Governor Patrick, Secretary Nee, and the Congressional delegation to make that goal a reality."
"As a nation, we have a great responsibility to care for the brave men and women in uniform who have defended the United States around the globe," said Congressman Neal. "We can never forget they extraordinary sacrifice they made on behalf of the American people. In their time of need, we must provide supportive services for our nation's veterans and their families. This timely grant will allow community organizations in Massachusetts to continue the extraordinary work they do assisting our local veterans each day."
"Both Veterans, Inc. in Worcester and Soldier On, Inc. in Leeds provide tremendously important services to men and women who deserve - and have earned - our support," said Congressman McGovern. I'm very pleased that the VA is continuing to support the great work going on in our communities."
"I give great credit to Senator Warren and Ed Markey for their efforts on behalf of our Veterans," said Congressman Lynch. "With the influx of returning Afghan and Iraq Veterans, we really need to step up. I am very pleased that the New England Center for Homeless Veterans in my district received a VA grant. They do great work on a daily basis. This $22,000 grant will help purchase a van for transporting homeless Veterans. We certainly owe our veterans a debt of gratitude for their service and sacrifice. All of these grants will help ensure that our Veterans receive the proper support and care that they deserve upon returning home."
"In my role on the Armed Services Committee, I have seen firsthand the challenges our servicemembers and their families face here on the homefront, particularly as they transition from active duty to veteran status," said Congresswoman Tsongas. "Facilities like the Veterans Northeast Outreach Center in Haverhill provide an invaluable service, bringing the right resources to veterans and their families when needed most. With this federal support, we can continue to fulfill our duty to serve those who so selflessly serve their country."
"I am pleased one of these VA awards will be going to the Southeastern Massachusetts Veterans Housing Program in New Bedford," said Congressman Keating. "This critical funding will provide help to our most vulnerable veterans by offering them housing and supportive services, as well as assisting in the addiction and recovery process if that is needed. One way we honor our veterans is by ensuring that they have the resources to transition to civilian life following their service. These community grants act as a safety net to do just that."
The grants received by Massachusetts are among $4.9 million in funding awards made to support 25 projects in 11 states as part of the VA's Supportive Services for Veteran Families program. Among the awards announced this week by the VA, Soldier On, Inc. in Leeds received a total of $125,839; Southeastern Massachusetts Veterans Housing Program, Inc. in New Bedford received a total of $17,994; Turner House Living Center for Veterans in Williamstown received a total of $14,185; Veterans Northeast Outreach Center, Inc. in Haverhill received a total of $22,750; Veterans, Inc. in Worcester received a total of $136,336; and New England Center for Homeless Veterans in Boston received a total of $22,000.