Annual event raises donations worth $290,000 for homeless Veterans


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Across the country, more than 23,000 VA employees, Veterans and community members walked to promote healthy lifestyles and to help homeless Veterans as part of the 2017 VA 2K Walk & Roll event.

The ladies with the banner above lead a group in Birmingham, Ala.

Participants in the event made voluntary donations in the form of items such as canned food, bottled water, toiletries, etc., that are distributed to homeless Veterans. These donations had an estimated value of $291,305.

Two million in donations since 2011

Since 2011 the VA2K Walk & Roll event has generated an estimated $2 million worth of in-kind donations to help homeless Veterans.

The event is held each year in conjunction with national Employee Health Day.

Annual “Walk and Roll” held at VA locations across the country

                             Tampa, Fla.

“Walking or rolling are fantastic ways to re-energize both the body and the mind.  They benefit the body and are positive ways to manage stress,” said Sandra Schmunk, program manager for the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Employee Health & Well-Being program which sponsors the VA2K.

Schmunk noted that a 1.2-mile walk or roll in a wheelchair can be done over a lunch break.

Augusta, Ga.

                                           Augusta, Ga.

This year’s VA2K Walk & Roll event included participation by all VA agencies including; VA Central Office, VHA, Veterans Benefit Administration and the National Cemetery Administration.

Saginaw, Mich.

                                                  Saginaw, Mich.

The event was held in May at 200 VA locations across the country.


Brady Bautch Public Affairs SpecialistAbout the author: Brady Bautch is a Public Affairs Specialist with the VA Population Health Services Patient Care Services

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Comments

  1. Kathleen O'Connor-Cooley    

    How can one learn about such events happening in our areas so that we can participate?

  2. JL Barnes    

    I would love to have information as to how I can begin such a campaign in the Denver area.I am the proud daughter of a heroic WWII hero. and am looking for ways to help those who deserve it most.I am disabled,so somewhat limited ingetting around,but can make things happen.Thanks,J.L. Barnes .

  3. Cliff J deQuilettes    

    The Veteran is moving me back to Hawaii. When I was in Marine Corp. I was in Kaneohe Bay – Marine Corp – 6 Years – I am starting to getting a Home. i am at age 54 – I am getting grounded in the last 2 years i was always in homeless areas. So Veteran please tell me how you are helping me. Thank you.

  4. Leland M Grieves    

    Homeless people do not have access to or use computors ecause of their state of mind or just can not afford. I am looking here for a way to help them who to contact FOR SURE. Have you ever tried to contact yourselves it is nearly impossible so what is happening to all of this money and who is really using it for Vetrans??

  5. Eugene Robinson Jr    

    Good morning,

    This is a great cause. I haven’t seen or heard of this in Phoenix, AZ. Can you advise me if there is a walk in Phoenix and who is the contact to get involved. My email address is (redacted)

    Thank you for your assistance.

    Eugene Robinson Jr
    (redacted)
    Veteran, US Army

  6. Joan Weber    

    Yes, how can we know about such events before they happen!!

  7. Deborah    

    On Friday, I’d been a VA employee 5 days. I’m a 70% disabled vet too. Anyway, my money had run our due to human error and me not getting nearly 3/4 of the VA education benefit and the drive to Oregon from San Diego (where my grandchildren and eldest daughter are) and the almost $530 I had to pay for a week at a Motel 6, and I started to panic.

    I’ve been trying for nearly 3-months (from San Diego), to secure housing in Roseburg, Oregon. I’ve made lists, called organizations, talked to anyone who would listen. I mean, I knew I’d be making a good pay once I start plus my disability pay and education pay, what would be the problem?

    On Friday, I broke down at work. I was taken to the nurse and have a social worker appointment on Monday. I was given, prior to moving here, NO IDEAS on keeping a roof over my head when I got here. On Friday, I hadn’t eaten anything since Thursday mornings banana. I took a swig out of that bottle of whiskey in my car that hadn’t been opened or removed. I got busted. But I’m glad. People are shocked to see someone drinking on the job and I’ve never been that person till that day. They got over their personal thoughts and reached out to help me.

    Long story short, non of the programs, etc that they could come up with, worked. Friday night, I sent an email out to friends for monetary aid till I get paid on the 25th. No one can help…BUT…I got a phone call from a friend who had an idea I hadn’t thought about and a neighbor paid for me to stay tonight in my hotel room and will let me crash the other bed in his room tomorrow and Monday.

    Basically, if you don’t ask, you’ll never know. I’m a tough gal and known to give the shirt off my back. I know I’ll be fine once I find a permanent home and get regular good food in me. I just can’t believe no one thought of this or any other veteran program that may be able to help.

    1. Kurt Petersen    

      You are courageous to tell us your story, but you do not leave a surname. Perhaps you want to remain anonymous. Things like this can be embarrassing, especially when you or someone you know is suffering from a service-connected condition/disability. All too often, those who mean well, but have no prior service, can do more harm than good when trying to help the real Veteran.

      You made a mistake with the whiskey, and I hope that you learned from it. Sometimes people need to make mistakes to learn things in life. However, it’s not the place of some therapists to judge on the service-connected Veteran when he/she feels that the Veteran in question might have, for example, a “psychosis due to substance abuse.”

      Very often, these issues of substance abuse are caused by underlying stressors and experiences from the past (usually in the military), where things have been “buried” beneath the conscious mind.

  8. ESSAM HELMY    

    It aches me, it hurts me, it makes sad when I see the heroes that served in our armed forces ” homeless”!
    I live in San Francisco, and I see so many Vetrans homeless, begging for food etc.
    We should crown them, find them jobs, get them help. But not treat them like beggars !!
    I cry when I see any of our Vetrans struck and struggling to survive day to day.
    We should find them help , resources, transport , shelter, and love and care for them.
    But our disabled, I wish I can help them, take them shopping, help them get whatever paperwork done to make their life as smooth as possible . All volunteer .
    God bless them. We will never forget what they have done for our country.

Comments are closed.