October 7, 2007

GI Go helps make Homeless Veterans Event a Success

Group helped organize a Stand Down headed by the Northern New Jersey Stand Down Committee at the Kennedy Recreational Center in Newark, New Jersey this past week

The GI Go Fund helped organize a Stand Down headed by the Northern New Jersey Stand Down Committee at the Kennedy Recreational Center in Newark, New Jersey this past week. The purpose of the Stand Down was to provide essential services to homeless veterans in New Jersey.

This was yet another event held by the Stand Down Committee, an organization that has been helping homeless veterans for 20 years. Stand Down events have provided homeless veterans nationwide with a wide range of necessities including food, clothing, housing, medical, legal and mental health assistance.

“We came here today for the simple fact that these brave men and women sacrificed everything and are now left with next to nothing. We feel that it is the least we can do to show these veterans that, despite the situation they are in, we are all still here for them and they have not been forgotten,” said GI Go Vice President Alexander Manis.

The 300 veterans who attended sought and found various types of support. Some veterans were simply looking to find new clothes to get through the cold winter season. Others wanted a simple haircut, shower, and a hot meal.

The clothing was donated by many generous Americans who felt that it was their obligation to help these heroes who have fallen on hard times.

“Countless people would come to our offices, donating any article of clothing they could spare, knowing that they would be delivered to veterans who truly need it. It was simply astonishing,” said Manis.

Among others who were offering their services to the event was Gary Englert, Director of the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans' Affairs, and Mayor Cory Booker of Newark, who delivered a speech at the event outlining New Jersey’s ongoing commitment to all our veterans.

While the veterans were appreciative of the help that was being given, their true goal was to meet with someone who can provide them with more than just temporary support.

“This support should not be seen as charity, but rather as a long overdue debt that can never be repaid,” said GI Go President Jack Fanous. “They have earned the right to live a life of honor and dignity. To see them without even so much as a roof over their heads is nothing short of sickening, and we all must work together to do everything in our capacity to end it.”