James W.D. Stewart

James W.D. Stewart

Embrace "The Suck"


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The next time that you pass a homeless person on the street, remind yourself that they could be a Forces veteran.  There's a very real possibility that this man or woman has served our country — they may have put themselves in harm's way, in defence of Canada, and/or in an effort to bring peace to another country.

Within the United States, 1 in 4 people living on the streets, is a veteran.  The statistics for Canada are unknown, but it's estimated that there's likely to be tens of thousands of veterans living/sleeping rough — either on the streets and/or in the bush — under extremely adverse conditions and in abject poverty.  These hardships are exacerbated by mental illness, as well as drug and alcohol abuse, and by Canada's extreme winter weather.

/blog/2017/05/15/vanishing-veterans/

https://forces.army/blog/2017/05/15/vanishing-veterans/

Vanishing Veterans

Count Words — Reading Time
by James Stewart
Published: 
Updated:  N/A
Location:  Greater Sudbury Public Library, 74 Mackenzie St., Sudbury, Ontario, P3C 4X8, Canada
 

 

The next time that you pass a homeless person on the street, remind yourself that they could be a Forces veteran.  There's a very real possibility that this man or woman has served our country — they may have put themselves in harm's way, in defence of Canada, and/or in an effort to bring peace to another country.

Within the United States, 1 in 4 people living on the streets, is a veteran.  The statistics for Canada are unknown, but it's estimated that there's likely to be tens of thousands of veterans living/sleeping rough — either on the streets and/or in the bush — under extremely adverse conditions and in abject poverty.  These hardships are exacerbated by mental illness, as well as drug and alcohol abuse, and by Canada's extreme winter weather.

 


 

Jason Duprau, art director of Legion Magazine, asked Janice Kun to create these haunting illustrations to accompany an article on homeless war veterans and how Canada's approaching the problem.

Joanne Henderson, Legion service officer, in Vancouver:

Nobody knows the number of homeless veterans in Canada, and this is one of the reasons why:
 
Aside from struggling with issues of addiction and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a lot of them don't want to be identified as veterans.  Some don't want their buddies to find out what's happened to them.
 
They think back to their time in the services as the good times in their lives and they're ashamed.  They think they should be able to take care of themselves.  They're in hiding; they're hiding from themselves.
 
It's not enough to ask "are you a veteran"…  We learned you have to ask "did you have any military service" because many don't feel like veterans — they think veterans are guys from World War Two.

One of the solutions that is proving very successful is Cockrell House in Colwood, British Columbia.  Much more than just housing, it's a full program that expects residents to move out and into more permanent accommodations within two years — helping them develop the life skills which they need to do that.

"It's a hand up, not a hand out", says Dave Sinclair, President of British Columbia/Yukon Command, which helped to fund Cockrell House.

 

Myself, I've recently found myself homeless for yet another time in my life.  I, absolutely, houldn't be in the position that I am at the moment.  I've been sleeping outside, in the streets, using cardboard as shelter — in sub-zero and cold/wet weather, at times — for some weeks now.  I'm waiting for my social assistance (i.e. Ontario Disability Support Program, Ontario Works, etc.) to get unfucked — I'venot received a single fucking cent for the month of May.  As such, I can't pay rent, and am relying upon places such as The Mission in order to eat.  Some days, I'm able to get 2 meals from them.  However, most days, I eat only once per day — during their supper meal time in the evening.

 
Categories:  Innominate  
Tags:  MyCAF, Opinionated, Self, The Suck

 
Syndicated to:

 
References:

  1. Cockrell House provides a home for veterans in transition
    by City of Colwood Referenced: 
  2. Legion Magazine
    by Innominate Referenced: 
  3. The Elgin Street Mission
    by Innominate Published: 
    Referenced: 

 

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Creative Commons Licence :: BY-NC-SA James W.D. Stewart by James Stewart is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.  Based on a work at https://github.com/jwds1978/jwds1978.github.io.