SUISUN CITY — Local veterans have a housing program aimed directly at helping them get their lives back on track, thanks to the combined action of the Fairfield-based Community Action North Bay and the Napa-based California Veterans Support Foundation.
The two groups formally opened up the home Thursday morning in Suisun City. It will provide a half-dozen veterans with housing and support services.
“This allows guys to spend a period of time here to get back on their feet,” said foundation member William Chadwick, whose group is helping fund the program and provide peer counselors who will spend time “vet-to-vet, helping them however we can.”
One of those counselors will be Pat Davis of Napa, who called the facility “a long time coming” after all the elements were put together during the past year.
Community Action North Bay has been helping the area’s needy with food, housing, rental assistance and referrals to other community organizations in various forms since 1967.
The California Veterans Support Foundation has been around since 2006, helping veterans returning home from wars successfully re-enter their communities.
Community Action North Bay Executive Director Ruth Matz said the Suisun City veterans housing program is one of the efforts to meet the needs of veterans in the community. It is also completely funded by the two organizations.
“There is no funding, except from us,” Matz said.
The idea started with Chadwick, former president of the foundation, after a presentation by Community Action North Bay in Napa. Chadwick asked what Community Action North Bay could do with $24,000. Matz replied that they could run a house for veterans with it, according to Matz.
The two groups started looking for a location late last year and formally opened the four-bedroom house on the 500 block of Sarah Way on Thursday.
It will house up to six veterans and provide them with support services in a vet-to-vet mentoring program.
“This will be one of many I hope,” Matz said.
There are plans in the works to open up similar houses in nearby communities such as Vacaville and Napa.
A Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program grant from the Department of Veterans Affairs is also on its way to Community Action North Bay to provide direct financial support for qualified veterans. The program, which will locally be called Veterans Express, is expected to start late this fall.
For more information about the veterans house and other programs, call 427-1148, email email@example.com or go to www.canbinc.org.
Reach Ian Thompson at 427-6976 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ithompsondr.