Friday, October 20, 2006

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Helping Homeless Vets
Three-day Stand Down offers a 'hand up'
By Erin Pursell/Staff Writer
Article Launched:10/18/2006 06:44:35 AM PDT
Northern California homeless veterans received a helping hand up Tuesday.

A flag raising and Jimmy Hendrix's rendition of 'The Star Spangled Banner' marked the opening ceremony of the North Bay Stand Down's fifth annual 'A hand up, not a handout' event at the Dixon May Fair grounds.

More than 250 homeless veterans and their families were bused to the site for three days of hot meals, medical care, and camaraderie.

'Our motto is 'hand up,' not 'hand out' because we want to reach out and help these guys out of the gutter,' said North Bay Stand Down chairman Patrick Stasio. 'It's all about helping get the veterans reintegrated into society as best we can.'

The Stand Down, a homeless veterans advocacy group event, boasts a comprehensive array of services. Key contributors, including the Veterans Administration and Solano County Health and Social Services, help to enable everything from medical and dental care to legal counseling and career advising on-site.

'It's a conglomeration of everyone coming together and providing the services these veterans need,' Stasio said, noting that the Solano County Board of Supervisors also made a $5,000"

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