December 20, 2013 17:19 ET

"Team AMVETS™ Welcome Home Program" Celebrates 1st Anniversary/500th Delivery of Furniture & Household Goods to Veterans in Need

LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwired - Dec 20, 2013) - On Friday, December 13th, in North LA, a notorious "unlucky day" turned into a very fortuitous afternoon for one Veteran in need. That was the designated day for the Holiday delivery of furniture/household goods and the ceremonial 500th delivery celebration for a very deserving Veteran, Frank Crawford and his family. Normally Frank doesn't expect much luck since losing his job, falling on hard times, and becoming homeless. It got so bad that Frank, his wife Melva and her son were all living at separate locations and there wasn't much hope.

But there was some hope after all. One short year ago, Team AMVETS™ of California started a Veteran's aid program that had never been done before -- delivering household goods and furnishings to in-need American Veterans who often move into empty apartments and cannot furnish their homes until long after moving in. These Vets are part of the HUD-VASH housing benefit program which combines the work of Team AMVETS™ Thrift Store employees, post members and community volunteers with the VA to produce a transformation for our deserving Veterans by taking them off the streets, and giving them a real home with walls, heat, household goods, furniture, gift cards and a new feeling of hope. "Rebuilding a life is not easy, but now Veterans can get started with this crucial support from Team AMVETS. Transforming a house to a home can transform a life," said Sharon Elefant, Veteran Outreach Manager for AMVETS Department of California Service Foundation.

Frank Crawford was selected to be the symbolic and very pleased 500th recipient. "A bunch of AMVETS folks came to deliver the furniture... they brought lamps, tables, dressers, 2 beds, chairs and a sofa. OMG, it's a blessing that there is help out there to help us furnish our apartment and make it a home. Thank you Team AMVETS." The milestone event turned into a celebration as the furniture was brought into the standing room only apartment as Team AMVETS staff, VA reps and government representatives looked on. "Team AMVETS is pleased to provide furniture and other household items to Veterans who have been homeless but are now in the process of rebuilding their lives," said Team AMVETS President Jim Pidgeon.

Frank summed it all up, "We went from on the street, to a shelter, to a furnished home within a 4-month period... I can't believe it!" The "Team AMVETS Welcome Home Program" currently services the San Diego, Los Angeles, Long Beach, Orange County and Fresno areas and plans to grow to over 1,000 deliveries in 2014.

To donate household goods, small appliances or furniture items to "Team AMVETS Welcome Home Program" please call 619-260-1391 or click Other questions-contact Dave Gyurina at Estey-Hoover Advertising & Public Relations (949) 756-8501 or Sharon R. Elefant-Veteran Outreach Mgr Team AMVETS 619-732-2135.

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