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Providence VA Medical Center, Rhode Island

 

Spring Into Health Resource Fair

Photo of nursing students and VA staff serving Veterans lunch.

Post-baccalaureate nurse residents, other Rhode Island College students and VA staff serve lunch Thursday, April 13, 2017, during the "Spring Into Health" resource fair for homeless and at-risk Veterans hosted by the Providence VA Medical Center's Homeless Patient-Aligned Care Team in partnership with Operation Stand Down Rhode Island. (Providence VA Medical Center photo by Kimberly DiDonato)

By Winfield S. Danielson III, Public Affairs Officer, Providence VA Medical Center
Friday, April 21, 2017

The Providence VA Medical Center's Homeless Clinic hosted the "Spring Into Health" resource fair in partnership with Operation Stand Down Rhode Island April 13.

The event featured information stations on employment and training, banking and personal finance, health and nutrition, suicide prevention, housing, education, substance abuse treatment and prevention, gardening tips, and more. Veteran participants were free to visit resource tables regarding information of interest to them, but were asked to visit at least 10 stations to be eligible for a door prize.

Veteran participants were also treated to a free lunch donated by Dave's Marketplace.

Participation in the event increased by 63 percent versus last year, with 55 Veterans attending. The most popular stations were banking and personal finance, with 100 percent of participants visiting the resource table; substance abuse treatment and prevention with 98 percent; the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, known as SNAP or food stamps, with 90 percent; the R.I. Department of Labor and Training, with 85 percent; and Clear Caption Phone, with 80 percent.

"Events like this are an important way to reach homeless and at-risk Veterans, and connect them with the services they'e earned through their service," said Dr. Susan MacKenzie, director of the Providence VA Medical Center. "I would like thank Operation Stand Down Rhode-Island for their partnership in putting on this event and in taking care of Veterans in need across Rhode Island."

The Providence VAMC Homeless Patient-Aligned Care Team is a model for the delivery of primary care and integrated services for homeless Veterans nationwide. The program is located in Trailer 37 on the PVAMC main campus in Providence, and has expanded to offer walk-in services five days-a-week with "one-stop shopping" for a variety of VA programs.

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