A recent $2.9 million award from the state will support special outreach to veterans.
By Theresa Walker / Orange County Register
The money will underwrite an outreach effort, through the “WelcomeHomeOC” program of Orange County United Way, that is considered a key step to getting veterans into housing.
The state money was secured through the efforts led by Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris, D-Laguna Beach, who earlier this month celebrated that funding at a ceremony in Irvine. The event drew a packed crowd of active and veteran service members, nonprofit leaders, local politicians and other supporters.
United Way’s plan is to use the money to expand its ongoing landlord recruitment program by finding more apartment owners willing to rent to veterans who have vouchers. The organization also will provide “housing navigators” — people who are trained to connect veterans with voucher-friendly landlords.
“WelcomeHomeOC is the missing piece we need,” Petrie-Norris said as she unveiled a giant faux $2.9 million check, with the words “To End Veteran Homelessness in Orange County” written on the memo line.