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This will be a much happier holiday season for Ronnie Vinston.

Vinston, an Army veteran, has been homeless for the past few years.  But on Dec. 18 during the Veterans Meet and Lease at DCHA’s Southwest Family Enhancement Center, Vinston got the keys to his own apartment.

“It means a lot to me,” he said just before going to his new place. “This is a day that I’ve been looking forward to for a long time.”

Vinston was one of 13 veterans who signed leases and got keys  that day and they are the latest success stories in DCHA’s effort to help end homelessness among veterans.

The District of Columbia Housing Authority, the DC Interagency Council on Homelessness, the DC Department of Human Services and the DC Office of Veterans Affairs, along with the Veterans NOW initiative, have worked together to help all veterans get vouchers and find housing.

The agencies have been holding the meet and lease events that offer pre-inspected units ready for eligible veterans to tour and possibly begin to rent that very day.

In November, nearly 650 veterans turned out for DCHA’s Veterans Appreciation Day where nearly 60 ended up in the pipeline to get housed within the next 30 days.

“My heart is full every time we do this,” said DCHA Executive Director Adrianne Todman.  “We have a responsibility as a country to make sure that our veterans are housed, but also to double down and work across agencies to make sure that we do it well and fast.”

Vinston said he and other veterans are grateful that people care about them and their service to our country.

“I say thank you for the support, not only in helping me, but helping a lot of other people as well,” he said.  “It’s a good thing that they are doing by reaching out to us veterans and getting people off the streets.”

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Last modified: 12/23/2015 9:42:45 AM