Eugene Mission offers new veterans’ program

The program will help veterans address their mental health needs and help them overcome barriers to find housing.

Posted: Nov. 12, 2018 5:07 PM
Updated: Nov. 12, 2018 6:19 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The Eugene Mission has served thousands of veterans over the years and hopes to continue efforts to get them back on their feet with their new veterans’ program.

The program will help veterans address their mental health needs and help them overcome barriers to find housing.

Program manager Shannon Smyth said there are about 1,100 people in Lane County who are homeless, and about 20 percent of those are veterans.

He said at any given time, the Mission has about 40 veterans, but those numbers tend to go up during the winter months.

One of those veterans is John Maddox, who has been chronically homeless since he was discharged from the army in 1970. He told KEZI 9 News the new program is a step in the right direction.

"Until other programs come in, we're going to stay where we’re at,” Maddox said. “But when you bring programs in like this, then we have a shot of getting up off the sidewalk."

Smyth said the Mission is always looking for volunteers. He also said to help get this program going, they are also looking for graduate students studying mental health to help volunteer with their new program.

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