By: American Legion Paradise Post 149
Just about everyone in the Veterans community knows about Veterans Village, but did you know that there are actually four villages, with two more on the drawing board? Recently, several members of the American Legion Paradise Post 149 family met with Dr. Arnold Stalk, founder Veterans Village, who gave us a tour of one of the villages. Veterans Village has grown from the single village at 1150 Las Vegas Blvd. So. that was designed to help homeless veterans transition to permanent housing, to a comprehensive program that has become a part of the permanent housing system. All of the villages work with the HUD/VASH housing programs, and coordinates efforts with the VA to help house our fellow Veterans.
Veterans Village 1 is still an emergency and transitional housing program, comprised of motel type accommodations for short term needs. Residents have access to some basic pantry items, but are limited to foods that can be prepared in a microwave over, as there are no cooking facilities in the rooms.
Veterans Village 2, which is located at 50 North 21st St., consists of 204 efficiency apartments, each with a small kitchen with stoves and ovens. On site is a well-stocked food pantry, thanks to a number of community partners, an amphitheater, dog park, and 24-hour crisis intervention center. Very soon, a number of highly modified and converted shipping containers, will become small apartments as well. Each container has a separate bedroom, shower and rest room, as well as a small kitchen area, large enough for a table and chairs.
Veterans Village 3 is the only assisted living facility, geared exclusively to Veterans in the Las Vegas community, and designed to accommodate Veterans in need of Amenities include TV/cable, free Wi-Fi, computers, dining facilities, laundry services, and a beautiful recreation room. Services include care coordination and case management, supportive services, transportation, dietary services, and medications management. It is not a skilled nursing facility like the Nevada State Veterans Home in Boulder City and does not require a medical referral. Veterans Village 3 is located at 100 S. 14th St.
Veterans Village 4 and 5 are currently being rehabbed, while Veterans Village 5 being slated to open first. This village, which is directly behind Veterans Village 2, is geared towards women veterans with children, and will work in conjunction with Shade Tree, to provide permanent housing for homeless women veterans with children. And if that’s not enough, Veterans 6 is on the drawing boards, with property in final stages of acquisition.
What makes all of the Veterans Villages unique, is that these are true, grass-roots efforts, supported by both individuals and local corporations alike. No tax dollars have been used in terms of direct contribution, nor government grants. Donations large and small are needed to help fund and maintain the villages, but as important as money is, in-kind donations are even more important. Of course, food drives to stock the pantries are always welcome. For information on Veterans Village, go to https://vvlv.org/