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Stand Down Helps Veterans Find Jobs, Housing | News

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Stand Down Helps Veterans Find Jobs, Housing
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LAS VEGAS -- Tens of thousands of veterans in the United States, including those in the Las Vegas valley, are leaving war zones to come home to a new battle -- one where they are fighting to stay off the streets.

The problem of homelessness affects more than just the vets themselves, but also those who rely on them on a daily basis.

Jeff weaver is a single father on a mission, working two jobs to support two young children. They all know what it's like to have next to nothing.

"It can be a beast sometimes," veteran Jeff Weaver said. "I was living in (a) car when we came here. We were living in a car."

Many years ago, Weaver was on a different kind of mission, as a soldier serving in the U.S. Army in military operations overseas.

On Wednesday, he joined with veterans across the country fighting the battle on the home front.

"It's hard to see any veterans we serve become homeless," U.S. Vets Executive Director Shalimar Cabrera said.

However, that is the stark reality facing many former military men and women, Cabrera said.

For 10 years her organization has hosted a free outreach event called Veterans Stand Down, providing vets with all kinds of services they need to stay off the streets.

"We are seeing more and more families still in housing, but at risk of losing it," she said.

Families such as those of former Army officer Robert Kidd, who almost got evicted last year because they didn't have enough money to pay the rent.

"Paycheck to paycheck, savings drawn out, credit cards maxed, just trying to survive," he said of his difficult transition to civilian life.

One goal of the stand down is to help vets find jobs so they never have to retreat to the streets.

A number of companies are participating in the stand down, including Vons, Cox and Home Depot. They say they've all hired veterans in the past and their goal is to get more of them on the job.

The Veterans Stand Down continues Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:40 p.m. at the Cashman Center.

Aside from job and housing assistance, vets can also get free medical care, hair cuts, and access to food, clothing and toiletries.

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