HUD secretary announces grant to help homeless veterans

HUD secretary announces grant to help homeless veterans

by Zack HedrickWednesday, December 18th 2019AA

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SAN ANTONIO – A new $29.3 million grant will help thousands of homeless right here in San Antonio and across the state.

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Dr. Ben Carson made the announcement in San Antonio after touring the downtown American GI Forum facility.

The money will be spread out among 216 public housing agencies across the country to provide more than 3,000 veterans with a permanent home.

Not long ago, Stephen Jacques and Rudy Cantu — both Army veterans — didn’t have a place to call home at all.

“I wound up out in the desert,” said Jacques. “Big Bend and I was living in a tent for two, three years.”

“I’m very fortunate that I found the GI Forum otherwise I’d be staying at the Salvation Army,” said Cantu.

HUD Secretary Doctor Ben Carson toured San Antonio’s downtown facility Wednesday.

When Jacques and Cantu got a chance to sit down with Carson, they told him how veteran supportive housing helped.

“Kept me alive because i was kind of at the end of my ropes,” said Jacques.

“There should not be any veterans, I mean people who have served our country and are preserving our freedoms, that they would be homeless is absolutely ridiculous,” said Carson.

After his tour, Carson announced a grant that will help a supportive housing voucher program designed for veterans.

From that total, the Opportunity Home San Antonio is receiving more than $105,000.

“The thing that is nice about this program is of course we don’t just shelter them,” said Carson.

Carson says while studying this issue, two of the biggest challenges facing homeless veterans across the country are drug addiction and mental illness.

The voucher program helps vets pay the rent and much more

“We have the services we have the case management we have the people that can actually delve into why they’re there,” said Carson.