LTC (USA-Ret) Mike Rainbolt and Capt (USN-Ret) Ray Siuta, together with financial support of many others, created the Yellow Ribbon Veterans Endowment Fund specifically to help those veterans and their families who receive services and through Community Outreach. This endowed fund was established to provide an annual distribution to Community Outreach, Inc.
Across the United States, veterans are overrepresented in numbers among the population of homeless individuals; in 2009, approximately 12 percent of all people experiencing homelessness identified as a veteran. This is a significant amount when one considers that less than 8 percent of the total U.S. population has veteran status.
Community Outreach, Inc. (COI) has been providing for the basic human needs of the mid-Willamette Valley’s homeless and working poor since 1971. COI provides emergency shelter to homeless veterans, many of whom successfully enter COI’s Transitional Housing program. These veterans receive personal, one-on-one case management services where COI helps find permanent housing and access to additional resources such as employment training for long-term self-sufficiency. Through COI’s state-certified behavioral health treatment programs, veterans are able to address substance abuse and mental health issues that often contribute to chronic homelessness situations, including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Homeless veterans also have access to basic medical and dental care through COI’s medical clinics for the uninsured. Health services include basic acute care, chiropractic services, dental services, physical therapy services, psychiatric services, diabetes education, and gynecology services. Additionally, COI’s food pantries and community kitchen and shower are available to individuals in our community in need of basic services who do not otherwise have access to food and hygiene, which includes homeless veterans.