The Virginia Daughters of the American Revolution adopted the Vetshouse in Virginia Beach as their service project during a Fall Forum meeting in Richmond in September.
A trailer loaded with nonperishable foods, snacks, drinks, paper products and other household necessities headed to the Vetshouse on September 16.
Four members of the local Roanoke Valley Chapter of the DAR attended the Fall Forum held at the Hilton Richmond Hotel in Short Pump.
The Vetshouse project was suggested by Princess Anne County Chapter Regent Jane Amelon after she visited Vetshouse and realized their dire need for supplies. State Regent Judith Joy Surber immediately supported the idea, and State DAR Service for Veterans Chairman Marie Vayer organized the drive. Members across the state donated thousands of items, which were sorted, boxed and packed in the trailer during the Fall Forum meeting.
Vetshouse Inc. has been serving over 800 homeless veterans since 1992. The 12-month program offers housing, food, clothing, job skills and placement, plus counseling, to homeless veterans of the United States Armed Forces to facilitate their return to productive lifestyles.
Vetshouse was founded with the concept of being “a hand up, not a hand-out,” in helping veterans return to “gainful, independent, responsible, and productive lifestyles— a way to “get off the street and on their feet.”
Graduates complete the program with “jobs that will support their needs, sufficient savings to pay their independent living expenses, budgeting and personal skills enabling self-sufficiency, and the pride to become productive citizens.”
More information is available on Vetshouse at www.vetshouseinc.org.
Other service projects carried out at the Fall Forum included the collection of old cell phones to be restored and given to women in Texas and Florida disaster areas. Snack items and drinks were designated for the USO welcome centers in their Virginia facilities for traveling military and their families. Empty ink cartridges will be recycled and the funds raised will be sent to the DAR Schools. Surber offered, “A special thanks to the VADAR daughters for their overwhelming generosity in support of these service projects.”
To learn more about the Roanoke Valley Chapter DAR, contact Regent Sharon Menzies at 540-890-6571. The local chapter meets each month at St. Timothy’s Lutheran Church on Hardy Road in Vinton.
At their October meeting, they will be tying blankets for veterans at the Virginia Veterans Care Center in Salem. Last month they began folding 300 American flags to be distributed to deployed and deploying American troops.