JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – In Onslow County, VFW Post 9133 is doing its part in helping out service members with their Veteran Stand Down event.

Hosted at the American Legion on Tuesday, hundreds of services and resources were offered to our veterans, struggling to get back on their feet. According to the Department of Veteran Affairs, in 2022 there were around 30,000 veterans facing homelessness across the U.S.

Tuesday’s event gives back to those who served our country.

“The community really comes together, the organizations, all the veterans’ organizations come together, and you kind of all see it under one roof,” said Wendy Silvera, commander of the VFW Post 9133.

After getting out of the military, many ex-service members don’t know where to look for resources.

“Unfortunately, some of our brothers and sisters, when they leave uniform, just don’t know about the programs and the benefits that they’ve earned because they wore the uniform and served our country. And that’s what we’re here for,” said VFW State Service Officer Jay Wood.

Or they don’t want to ask for the assistance they need.

“While you’re in the military, you develop an extreme sense of pride. And when you’re out and on hard times, you don’t want to ask anybody,” said Dan McHugh, former commander of the VFW Post 9983. “The biggest thing we need to get across is we’re all brothers and sisters here. And we’re here to help each other.”

Some veterans took advantage of everything they had to offer, like health care services, employment opportunities, and more.

“The people here are really friendly. They’re really accepting. It’s a judgment-free zone,” said one veteran, Jeremiah Johnson. “I’m really here to explore the opportunities on what I could be doing or what I want to do”

The VFW plans to continue this event in future years. If you’re interested in getting involved, you can reach out to the VFW Post 9133.