Veterans Matter has a black ops-like mission that’s pretty simple: House as many unhoused veterans and veteran families as we can, as fast as we can.
The idea was formed during a conversation between 1Matters founder Ken Leslie and the director of the Healthcare for Homeless Veterans program of VISN-11 (the Northwest Ohio/Southeast Michigan division of the VA), Shawn Dowling. When Shawn told Ken about the VASH vouchers and the work her team was doing, Ken asked her what was missing for more veterans to take advantage of all the vouchers available for the area. Shawn said that virtually none of the unhoused veterans had the money for the first month’s rent and security deposit (go figure). Ken asked, “That’s it? That’s all that’s in the way of more veterans getting off the streets? Let me make a few calls.”
A couple of our amazing board members are in the music industry, and one of them got ZZ Top to agree to film a PSA while they were in Detroit for a concert in June. When Dusty Hill of ZZ Top heard what the PSA was about, he and his wife immediately got excited about the program. Another strong relationship with a music legend was created, and the Hills stayed in touch with us. It wasn’t long until they were talking about starting a Veterans Matter chapter in their hometown of Houston and to date it has housed 56 Houston veterans.
Since then a new chapter in New England was formed and several others in process. This video lets you know the impact, in their own words.
We’re taking care of our own, 1 by 1. Let’s keep rolling!
For complete information on how to start one in your community, visit Veteransmatter.org