After a four-year hiatus, North Bay Operation Hand Up, a non-profit organization focused on helping outraged or homeless veterans, will bring back the “North Bay Stand Down” in October.
The event, according to organizers, aims to provide resources and financial assistance to veterans returning from Operation Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom, as well as any former or current veterans.
A “retreat” is defined by the Department of Veterans Affairs website as an overnight event intended to provide food, clothing, and physical or mental health services to homeless or at-risk veterans.
This year’s North Bay Stand Down will take a slightly different form as it will no longer be an overnight event and will instead be a single day event as attendance has been lower and the band wants to make the most of it using its resources, according to NBOHP Treasurer and Service Provider Coordinator Lynn Jewell.
“The favorite way to do it is really three days because it gives people a chance to bond,” Jewell said, “but it’s getting harder and harder to get the resources for a three-day event. days.”
Since its inception in 2002, the North Bay Stand Down has had over 300 attendees at its peak. This has diminished as more veterans find sustainable housing, reducing the need for some of the resources provided by the organization. However, with the recent withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan and the ensuing Kabul airport bombing, Jewell said the event could see a higher turnout from young veterans.
“The situation when we came out of Afghanistan brought a lot of guys back,” Jewell said. “We are seeing more and more younger veterans needing services, so hopefully this will be a good opportunity for them.
The North Bay Stand Down will take place at the Dixon Fairgrounds on October 12, with set up taking place the day before. Volunteers can sign up at nbstanddown.org or call the Solano County Veterans Services office.
“Whether our veterans served in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan or in any other military action, in war or peace,” the NBOHP said in a press release, “we have undertaken to take them home”.