Fri September 21, 2012
Hundreds of needy veterans at Operation Stand Down
By CATHERINE WELCH
PROVIDENCE, RI – Some 500 veterans are expected to converge on to Diamond Hill Park in Cumberland this weekend for Operation Stand Down. The camp gives at-risk veterans a chance to tap into some much-needed services.
Olive-green tents cover the lawn as needy veterans arrive, ready to take advantage of everything from a chance to clear a minor legal infraction to getting a cavity filled inside the dentistry tent. It's all part of Operation Stand Down, which came to Rhode Island 19 years ago as a way to match veterans with social services.
John Frost served in the Navy for three years. It's his first time visiting the camp, and he's impressed.
"All the stuff I didn't know was available to me, I'm getting. From the littlest things as a hair cut to the medicals, eye care, teeth, that stuff," says Frost. "So it's working out really good."
Organizers say they're seeing more homeless veterans than ever before. Operation Stand Down runs through Sunday.
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