On Thursday, February 18, Green Bay Veterans Manor hosted a "Lunch and Learn" with 10 people from the community in attendance. Representatives included the neighborhood association, a local VFW post and a retired gentleman from the police department.
The primary purpose was to educate the community about what the typical population for a building like Green Bay Veterans Manor looks like, and the struggles and successes it often faces. Because the building has had numerous police calls, management worried that word would get out that the property was a problem building. However, many of the community members left the Lunch & Learn with a much better understanding of Permanent Supportive Housing and the role of Center for Veterans' Issues (CVI) in providing wrap-around services and case management for residents.
Mike Routheau, the on-site property manager, and Darlene Piszczek, the regional property manager, shared statistics of the current population:
- Of the 50 one bedroom units, 10 units utilize VASH vouchers.
- 80% of residents are 50 years of age or older
- 80% of residents are male
- 20% of resident suffer from some level of medically diagnosed PTSD
- 40% of current residents were homeless prior to moving to Vets Manor
- 30% of current residents receive Social Security or military retirement benefits
- 30% of current residents receive some sort of Disability compensation
- 25% are currently employed
- 15% struggle to find a job, however Cardinal Capital offers internal jobs, such as garbage, recycling, snow removal and lawn care
- 1st year of a building
- Dust settles
- Police involvement
- 10 residents moved in without jobs and are now successfully working
- Of the 25 residents who came to us with chronic homeless history, 21 are completing their 1st successful year of housing. Only 4 of these resident did not finding success in this setting and needed a more supervised level of housing
The community has stepped up to support the building's residents in any way they can. They have agreed to work to secure free bus passes for our residents, move the bus stop to a much more accessible area closer to the building, organize a "Host a Meal" event each month which provides the residents with a home cooked meal and opportunity for socialization. CVI is very excited about all the leads and plans to work closely with this community group.
Green Bay Veterans Manor is looking for help with the following:
- Spread the word of the building's success
- Local services and educational presentations to benefit the residents
- Job leads