AUGUSTA, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- It's hard to imagine our veterans experiencing homelessness, but according to to the Department of Veterans Affairs, there are over 70,000 in the United States who do.
Around 100 of those living in Maine decided to try to turn their life around Saturday. That's about how many homeless vets attended the 16th annual Homeless Veteran Stand Down at the Togus VA Hospital in Augusta. An event hosted by the Veterans Affairs Maine Healthcare System.
"It's a big problem in the state of Maine," said Director of the VA Maine Healthcare System, Ryan Lilly. "It's not always talked about, it's not always acknowledged, but a lot of people here today are trying to solve it."
The event offered several services including medical and dental screenings, employment help and housing opportunities. All things that US Army Veteran, Ted Slocum, appreciated to help him get his life back on track.
"We need help to find a place to live, to get our health needs met, to reunite with our families and to get our lives back on track and this is the place with the people that are willing to do that for our veterans," said Slocum.
The event is part of the national Stand Down program with the Department of Veterans Affairs, with the goal of ending veteran homelessness nation wide within the next four years.