SOT-AZ introduces HOHP

Ceil Levatino

This month I’d like to introduce you to an organization that you support each time you help SOT-AZ raise funds, and to some programs our members are personally involved with.

Welcome to HOHP (Honoring, Hiring, Helping Our Heroes)

HOHP is dedicated to assisting veterans and military families in Pinal County, by providing services or connecting them to providers that will assist with life’s challenges. Services are provided at Eagles Landing Veteran Center in Casa Grande. and the Eagle One Mobile Veteran Outreach Center.

This organization, under the direction of Kim Vandenberg, is the primary referral and on-site care center for veterans in crisis. Each day, a veteran can visit the center and find food to eat while there and a closet that has non-perishables to take, clothing for both male and female vets, computers to use on site, and a place to connect with other vets and volunteers. Each person requesting help must have been vetted with their DD214, or have a driver’s license that identifies them as a veteran.

The following counseling services are offered including Tuesday AM – combat veterans; Thursday AM – PTSD; Thursday PM – Veterans only AA; Military sexual trauma as requested; Readjustment counselling as needed.

Another wonderful service they provide is Congressional pinning of vets who are in hospice. One gentleman knew he was scheduled to be pinned, and kept asking his family when HOHP was coming. It took a few days, but when the day arrived, he proudly sat up in bed to receive his recognition. He died an hour later.

HOHP receives no government funding. They exist because of the generosity of you who support SOT-AZ, community fundraisers, private contributions, and grants.

Currently they need sheets and pillow cases, items to stock a kitchen (cutlery, bakeware, etc.), and furniture in good condition.

The Stand Down will occur in late March. This annual event distributes new shoes and socks to our local veterans. Please visit our sports club here at the Ranch and you’ll find a box for the collection of much needed white ankle socks.

Emergency services are provided and expenses shared by HOHP and SOT-AZ. If a need will cost more than the cap allowed through HOHP, we will step in and cover the balance. Some examples of ways we have intervened are: the purchase of a new tire, utility costs for a month, rent for a month, gas cards, and, perhaps the most touching, the funds so a family could have their veteran dad cremated and buried.

When I asked Kim what was most important to convey to you, she replied, “I have been so grateful to SOT-AZ and the residents of Robson Ranch who support them. There is simply no way we could provide the services that we do without them.”