Gateway Gazette

VETS Canada to Open a Drop-In Support Centre for Ottawa Ottawa Veteran in Need – the First of its Kind

Veterans Emergency Transition Services Canada (VETS Canada) is pleased to announce the grand opening of their first Drop-In and Support Centre in downtown Ottawa at 517 Besserer Street – set to open doors on 17 September 2018.

The VETS Canada Drop-In and Support Centre, the very first of its kind in Canada, will be open throughout the week and will be operated by a full-time VETS Canada staff person. Allowing Veterans a safe and welcoming space to receive immediate peer, emotional and/or emergency support, the Centre will include a Veteran’s lounge, computer centre, library, common/social area, laundry facilities and phone station. Veterans will also be able to access food and travel support, and connection to external resources (e.g. Veterans Affairs Canada, community organizations) as needed.

“From our research and conversations with hundreds of struggling Veterans across the country, we have learned that those who served are in desperate need of a ‘one stop shop,’“ notes Jim Lowther, VETS Canada CEO/President. “… a safe place where they can go and receive immediate support and services from qualified personnel and Veterans, without having to chase a referral to another location or service. At the Drop-In Centre, we can provide emergency aid immediately, along with numerous other valuable services – right within the Centre’s walls.”

“One of the most exciting features of the Centre will be peer support,” adds Debbie Lowther, VETS Canada Co-Founder and Chair. “Not only will Veterans be able to garner invaluable support and comradery from other local Veterans whom are utilizing the Centre’s services, they will also have access to local, trained VETS Canada volunteers (primarily Veterans or still-serving members) – whom will be using the Centre as a home base for volunteering.”

A reception will be held on 24 September at 18h00 EDT in honor of the Centre’s grand opening.

About VETS Canada

VETS Canada, a national charity and service provider of Veterans Affairs Canada, is the largest 24/7 Canadian organization dedicated to addressing the emergency needs of homeless and in-crisis Veterans of the Canadian Armed Forces and RCMP. Our hundreds of trained and dedicated volunteers, primarily Veterans or still-serving members, have relied on a unique model of peer-support to provide life-saving aid in response to thousands of requests for assistance. It is our firm belief that no one who served to protect our homes should ever be without one. Learn more at www.VETSCanada.org.

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