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Veterans Stand Down event looks to give back to area veterans

SIOUX CITY (KTIV) – Giving back to those who gave the most is an important cause to many across the nation and here in Siouxland.

On Thursday the organization “Sioux City Vet Center” and other organizations held their Veterans Stand Down event.

The goal of the event is to reach all veterans in Siouxland and work to end homelessness.

“We stand on the ground, the freedom that they’ve provided to us and without that we would have nothing,” said Mary Jordan, Sioux City Vet Center Director.

About 28,000 veterans live in the Siouxland area. But many of them go without the resources they need like food, clothing, and medical treatment.

The Veterans Stand Down event in Sioux City is looking to make a difference.

“To have a hub where people can meet in the Sioux City area, in a unified fashion, where people can get all of their questions answered in one spot is an incredibly helpful resource,” said Jordan.

Thursday’s event is focused on providing veterans with resources they may need in the community. One of the biggest parts of the event is the food giveaway.

Organizers said nearly 300 people will benefit because of this distribution.

Many of the volunteers have served as well.

“I came out, started my civilian life,” said volunteer Dennis Martin. “Found this group in town that supported veterans, said this is what I need to do. They need help. They’re afraid to ask, but once they are here they find out they can get a little bit of help and that’s what we are here for is to make sure all they did for their country, we haven’t forgotten them.”

One way an organization is making sure of that is by making dog tags for service members.

“Traditionally guys have lost their dog tags over the years as they have gotten out, but this is a chance for them to get those dog tags once again,” said Kevin Brown, Sioux City Vets Center Veterans Outreach Specialist. “It’s like a memorabilia type of thing for a military service member,”

Brown said as a retired member of the United States Army, it means a lot to be able to give a little bit back.

“We’re always looking out for them,” Brown said. “They were there for us, now we must be there for them when they need us.”

Jordan said mental health and homelessness are very prevalent in Siouxland Veterans and they are working to do everything they can to combat the issue.

Michaela Feldmann

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