The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Denver Regional Office is hosting their annual Homeless Veterans Stand Down at the Colorado Army National Guard Armory, 5275 Franklin St., Denver, on Thursday, November 8, 2012, from 8:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Over 480 homeless veterans were served last year.

Social services and providers will include government and non-profit organizations including the Denver Regional Office (Veteran benefits counseling), the Denver VA Medical Center (medical screenings), VA Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Services, Veteran service organizations, the Social Security Administration, employment and housing referrals, and legal services. Veterans will be offered clothing items, sleeping bags, boots, free flu shots, haircuts, and eye glass repair. Warren Technical School of Culinary Arts will be preparing hot meals. The Denver Sheriff’s Department is also donating the time of several Sheriffs, Verizon is providing telecommunication and Internet services, and the Colorado Army National Guard Armory is donating its space for the event. Other companies donating items are S&B Porta-Bowl Restrooms, Republic Services and Frito Lay. The Veterans of Foreign Wars will conduct the opening presentation of colors at 8 a.m.

This year, the Denver County Courts Homeless Court Program will provide a judge to hear Homeless Veterans who have minor warrants and tickets that preclude them from securing jobs and housing. The Women Veterans of Colorado received grant funds to provide Homeless Women Veterans with bags of toiletries especially made for women, the Disabled American Veterans and Veterans of Foreign Wars donated funds for items such as RTD bus tickets and King Soopers gift cards.

Stand Down is a military term that means a temporary stop of offensive military action. Since 1988, Homeless Veteran Stand Downs are designed to transform the despair and immobility of homelessness into the momentum necessary to get into recovery, to resolve legal issues, to seek employment, to access health services and benefits, to reconnect with the community and acquire housing.

Buses will be running from the St. Francis Day Shelter, the Samaritan House, and the Denver VA Medical Center to the Colorado Army National Guard Armory.