MACV “Stand Down” returns to Target Field to help Minnesota Veterans
MINNEAPOLIS – WCCO is partnering with The Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans (MACV) in their mission to help end veteran homelessness. It’s all part of our Home for the Holidays campaign.
They hosted a special “stand down” event Monday at Target Field. This is WCCO’s sixth year partnering with MACV, and the need has never been greater.
For Army veteran Jackie Favors, coming to the stand down is like spending time with family.
“This is like Christmas,” Favors said. “This is so much fun.”
She and other unsheltered veterans got access to resources they’ve earned from their service to country.
“There’s a lot of people that you meet, new people that you meet, and also when you talk to another Veteran they understand what you’re going through,” she said.
Being around others who served helps lift their spirits. What also helps is the dozens of vendors MACV has gathered on site, looking to help them solve whatever problem they may have.
Shaun Riffe is the Development Director for MACV and a Veteran himself.
“Days like today show us how many people come out to help our veterans. So today I think we have 65 partner agencies that are here to do assistance to support and enhance everything we do with veterans, and we just couldn’t do it without them,” Riffe said.
From haircuts to vaccinations, help with employment, housing or counseling – MACV has made this a one-stop shop for veterans.
“I happen to be homeless and so I’m staying at Salvation Army which is close by, and they recommended that we come,” said Hollis Caldwell. “There’s a lot of services, a lot of information available, so I came to indulge myself in those items.”
To make sure veterans have what they need, organizations like the Bloomington
American Legion came with a check for $10,000 to help MACV support the home for veterans in their hometown.
“A lot of times when you think of homeless Veterans you think of individuals, and this is one for families. So a lot of times maybe the Veteran is homeless and there’s several mouths that require that income. This is a place that they can stay until they get back on their feet,” said Tim Engstrom with the Bloomington American Legion.
That’s the goal of all involved in this year’s stand down: get Veterans back on their feet, off the streets and into a home for the holidays.
Minnesota is on pace to be the fourth state in the country to declare functional zero or no homeless veterans in the state.
Just about 259 people are on the homeless Veterans registry, and the push is to get them all a place to call home.
To help MACV reach their goal of ending Veteran homelessness in Minnesota, text MACVORG to 44321, or go to wcco.com/holidays to make a donation.
Any amount you can give will go a long way to help, and all donations right now are being doubled up to $100,000 thanks to Lennar.