3rd Annual Binghamton Veteran Stand Down

By Haley Burton

November 13, 2012 Updated Nov 13, 2012 at 7:24 PM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) What resources are available to veterans? "Stand Down" events provide a safe place for those homeless or in-need veterans and their families.

The third annual Stand Down was held at the American Legion Post 1645. More than 35 organizations geared toward helping veterans came together at the event.

"We do have men and women out there that are coming back from these war zones that are having problems re-adjusting, finding jobs, getting along with their families, even just functioning on a day to day basis," said Jason Davis, Vet Center, "The best thing I can tell veterans is if they want to find out about any programs they may have is to contact the local Vet Center or contact the VA. They will be able to help them. They have counselors that will be able to help them in any area they may need."

Personal items were distributed as well as clothes and food.

"Us vets are a close knit crowd. Not many people can understand us. Even our family can't understand us. We are brothers," said Reginald Williams, Syracuse.

Organizations included the State Deptartment of Labor, NYS Social Services, VA Homeless Services, Vet Center, Legal Aid Society, VA Health Screenings, Dental Services, local shelters, local colleges, NYSEG, and substance abuse organizations.

Stand-Downs began in 1988 in San Diego, CA by Vietnam Veterans to help homeless vets. Since then, Stand Downs have blossomed throughout the country

They are currently being held across the nation to primarily assist homeless veterans obtain housing, employment, counseling, health and dental care, food, hygiene items amongst many other services.

'We've been able in central New York to cut homelessness in half in central New York since 2008. Nationally, we've been able to do that as well but it's not enough. We need to focus now on these returning veterans and their families to make sure they don't enter into homelessness," said Adam Ormsby, Healthcare for Homeless Veterans, "There's literally tens of thousands of vets in Central New York who are on the edge of being in crisis finally, maybe one paycheck away from entering into a situation where they are unstable."

There was food and music at the event. Four different bands performed on the stage including "360 Degrees".

For more information on the Binghamton Vet Center, click here

For more information on the Syracuse VA Medical Center, click here